Paula Radcliffe unveils Great Runners in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Paula Radcliffe at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford with two of the six women picked as

Paula Radcliffe at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford with two of the six women picked as 'Radcliffe's Great Runners' for the Morrisons Great Newham London Run, Paula Blake and Vicki Read. Picture: Ellie Hoskins - Credit: Archant

Marathon champion Paula Radcliffe was at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this morning to unveil her Great Runners.

The six women, including two from Newham, were picked from hundreds of applicants to be mentored by Paula in preparation for the Morrisons Great Newham London Run.

Paula Blake, 52, has tried to fit in running for fun while raising her four children, but now wants to be able to run regularly.

The Community Links projects manager said: “I am thrilled to have been selected to be one of Radcliffe’s Great Runners.

“It would be amazing to be able to increase my self-confidence so that l can encourage, support and engage the children and young people l work with to get involved in running for fun, enjoyment and health.”

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She is joined by Newham Leisure Centre’s general manager, Vicki Read.

The 43-year-old said: “I started running properly when I was looking after my mum while she battled cancer.

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“She unfortunately lost her battle to cancer four years ago, but I’ve continued to run and raise money along the way.

“I would love to inspire people of all ages, shape and sizes to get active and enjoy running as it has had no end of benefits to me during some really dark and difficult times.”

The duo, along with their fellow Great Runners, will benefit from support and encouragement from Britain’s top female marathon runner in preparation for the July 19 10km race.

That training got underway this morning as they joined Paula for a light jog in the shadow of the Olympic Stadium - the finish line for the run.

Paula said: “I hope that the six women we’ve picked will go on to inspire thousands of other women across the UK to take that first step, sign up for the Morrisons Great Newham London Run and find out for themselves just how amazing running can be.

“You don’t need to be the fastest or the fittest, you just need to give it a go.”

Places are still available for the Morrisons Great Newham London Run. Visit to sign up.

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