Brighton Half Marathon: thousands take part in high winds

Thousands of runners turned out in high winds and rainy weather to attempt the 30th Brighton Half Marathon.

Sunday, 23rd February 2020, 4:40 pm
Elite runners cross the start line at the 30th Brighton Half Marathon. Picture by Jessica Hubbard SUS-200223-143244001

Nearly 8,000 runners took part in this year’s event.

The race klaxon was sounded at 9.30am by the original 1990 race winner, David Knight with Brighton’s favourite resident, Norman Cook, waving the runners off on their journey around the city’s sights.

Elite runners crossed the finish line just after 10.30am at the 13-mile-long route this morning and thousands of other runners followed.

The race field featured hundreds of runners new to the half marathon distance, plus experienced half marathoners and runners training for a full Spring marathon.

Unfortunately, organisers had to postpone the youth race due to high winds.

Around £1 million is raised through sponsorship money every year and this supports local causes like The Sussex Beacon, which also organises the event.

The Sussex Beacon is a Brighton-based charity which provides a range of services for men, women and families living with or affected by HIV across Sussex.

Notable entries included runners carrying weights in an attempt to break a world record, a man running in a full suit of armour, a runner carrying a giant tiger, and many more.

Alongside the elite field, thousands of charity runners took to the streets of the city, raising around £1m for more than 30 charities, including local charities The Sussex Beacon and Chestnut Tree House, and national charities including Alzheimer’s Society and Macmillan.

Entertainment took place at The Grand, headline sponsors of the event, and crowds turned out in droves to cheer the runners on despite the challenging weather conditions.

Live music was provided by The Sundaes and Alex Banks playing live at The Grand.

Race director Martin Harrigan said: “What a race we had today! We are deeply honoured that nearly 8,000 runners braved the high winds and stormy conditions to run The Grand Brighton Half Marathon this morning. So many inspiring people, running for fantastic causes. Thank you to all families, spectators and volunteers who came out today to make The Grand Brighton Half Marathon such an incredible event! We couldn’t be more grateful to you all.

“I would also like to say a huge thank you to our headline sponsor, The Grand Brighton Hotel and all of the other sponsors and charities who support this fantastic event.”

Andrew Mosley, general manager at main sponsor The Grand Brighton, said: “We couldn’t be more thrilled to have been headline sponsors of The Grand Brighton Half Marathon for our third year.

“It’s an incredible sight to see so many runners come from far and wide for such a fantastic event supporting great causes.

“Your contributions to The Sussex Beacon and all of the other race partners is immensely valued, particularly on this year’s 30th anniversary celebration.

“The race village had an amazing atmosphere once again, and it was a real privilege to greet runners at the finish line. Well done to everyone who took part in this year’s race.”

Winners were as follows:

Men’s race winners:

First place: Kevin Moore, 29, from Ireland in 01:09:05

Second place: Neil Boniface in 01:09:17

Third Place: Paul Martelletti in 01:09:40

Women’s race winner:

First Place: Phillipa Williams, 26, from Sheffield in 01:17:55

Second place: Heather Noone in 01:19:53

Third place: Maisie Trafford in 01:21:08

Wheelchair race winners:

First place: Gary Cooper in 01:20:49

Second place: Rob Smith in 01:32:25

Women’s wheelchair race winner: Ellie Page in 01:36:39

Visit for more on the race.