Norfolk runners cross line at London Olympic Park

Norfolk runners were among the first people to cross the finish line at the Olympic Stadium this weekend.

Saturday afternoon saw a sea of red snake through the Olympic Park as 5,000 people took part in the National Lottery Olympic Park Run.

The five-mile run was the first public event to take place in the stadium.

Almost 43,000 members of the public entered a ballot last year to gain a place in the event and the chosen runners came from all over the United Kingdom.

Among those competing was Eastern Daily Press competition winner Karen Carpenter.

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Mrs Carpenter, from Carleton Rode, near Attleborough, completed the five mile course in 46 minutes and 23 seconds.

The 46-year-old occupational health nurse, whose daughter Bethany and husband Nigel went to cheer her on, said: 'The feeling when I ran into that stadium was amazing and I found another burst of energy as I was spurred on by the crowd.

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'What wonderful memories I will hold of today.'

The route took in landmark venues for the Games including the basketball arena, velodrome, BMX track, hockey arena, handball arena, the waterpolo arena and the aquatics centre.

Each runner wore a red T-shirt emblazoned with the words 'We were first across the Olympic finish line', words which were echoed on their finisher medals.

As runners entered the stadium, they were spurred on by the sound of the music from Chariots of Fire and the cheers of 12,000 people.

A number of famous faces to took part in the race including model Nell McAndrew, Princess Beatrice, Sally Gunnell and Roger Black.

Tony Robinson, 32, from Lakenham, Norwich, who took part, said: 'My favourite part was when I turned into the the stadium and they were playing the Chariots of Fire music.

'The run was very interesting and you saw all the sights. Having seen the Olympic Park now, I'm sure London will put on a proper show at this year's Olympics.'

Trish McCarthy, 40, from Shipdham, near Dereham, who also took part, added: 'It was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I'm proud that I got to be a part of history.'

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