In a coup for the Brighton Marathon, marathon world record-holder Paula Radcliffe has agreed to be the official starter for this year’s race on 6 April, the IAAF Bronze Label Road Race organisers announced on Monday (24).
The 2005 world marathon champion will signal the start for the thousands who will be setting off from Preston Park at 9.15am on Sunday 6 April.
Radcliffe will also make a guest appearance at the Brighton Marathon Exhibition on Saturday evening.
“There are not many legends in the world of sport but we have a genuine athletics legend in Paula, of that there is no doubt," said race founder Tim Hutchings.
“She is, by any standard, the greatest marathon runner in history and her utter dominance through several seasons over the past decade cannot be disputed.
“For the city, for all our runners and for the organising team, this is a huge boost and it will be just fantastic to have Paula wave the fields off and to welcome the winners home.”
For more than 20 years, Radcliffe has been in the forefront of British athletics, amassing world, European and Commonwealth gold medals.
The highlight of her marathon career came at the London Marathon in 2003 when she clocked 2:15:25, a time no one has yet approached.
Owner of the top three fastest times ever, Radcliffe has won three times in both London and New York, as well as once in Chicago. On the road, she also holds the 10km and 20km world records.
Organisers for the IAAF