The countdown to what is the largest half marathon has been set in motion with general ballot places for the Simplyhealth Great North Run opening today (Monday 9 January). The ballot will be open for less than a month and is due to close at noon on Monday 6 February.
As ever, demand for the Great North Run will be exceptionally high. The race attracts upwards of 50,000 runners and is the highlight of a spectacular weekend in the region, which also features the Great North CityGames, the Great North 5K plus the Junior and Mini Great North Run.
Starting in Newcastle, the half marathon course takes in the iconic Tyne Bridge, goes through Gateshead passing the famous international athletics stadium and finishes in the coastal town of South Shields. 2016 saw (Sir) Mo Farah add to his two GNR titles with a comfortable victory, Vivian Cheruiyot capped her 33rd birthday in style with a thrilling victory over Priscah Jeptoo.
At the turn of the year, organisers confirmed that Simplyhealth will be the new title sponsor of the Great North Run and will cover events in Manchester, London, Bristol, Birmingham, Portsmouth, Edinburgh and Newcastle.
Further details about the ballot process are available on the Great Run website. All applicants will be notified by email on or prior to Thursday 9 February.