Olympian Andy Vernon has helped four-strong training group to get ready for their half-marathon debuts
Aries Merritt returns to Great North CityGamesSeptember 4, 2017
World 110m hurdles record-holder back on the pop-up track on Tyneside
Aries Merritt looks set to be the man to beat in the 110m hurdles when Great North CityGames action returns to the banks of the Tyne on Saturday (September 9).
The world record-holder has had an incredible return to world class competition after a kidney transplant in 2015 and will continue a season which has seen him finish fifth at the IAAF World Championships in London.
The American has also won at three Diamond League meetings – in London, Birmingham and Rome – this summer and now returns to the Great North CityGames, an event he has raced at twice before, in 2013 and 2014.
Among his rivals on the pop-up track alongside Gateshead’s quayside in the free-to-spectate event will be his compatriot Jarrett Eaton, while British interest comes in the form of Jake Porter, the British indoor 60m hurdles and outdoor 110m hurdles bronze medallist. Czech athlete Petr Svoboda, the 2011 European indoor 60m hurdles champion, will also compete.
With a range of events on offer from 100m to the one-mile distance plus pole vault and long jump in a specially-constructed arena on the banks of the Tyne, the Great North CityGames kicks off a weekend of first-class sporting action. It encompasses the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great North Run, the Simplyhealth Great North 5k and finishes with the world-famous Simplyhealth Great North Run on the Sunday.
The athletics action is free to watch, no ticket is required, and the event is broadcast live on BBC One from 1.15pm.