HOST OF STARS AT THE 2019 VITALITY WEEKEND
Celebrities from the worlds of sport and entertainment and 20 pupils from local Southwark and Lewisham schools and including players from our Girls RTC will be in attendance at the 2019 Vitality Weekend running festival in London: the Vitality Westminster Mile on Sunday 26 May and the Vitality London 10,000 on Monday 27 May.
On the Sunday, sporting legend Sir Mo Farah will be at the start line to cheer runners on throughout the morning. Those who have entered the family events may be lucky enough to #RunWithMo as Farah joins one of the family waves to run alongside participants of all ages on the day.
England cricket stars will rub shoulders with mascots from some of the country’s top sports clubs, including Arsenal, at the world’s biggest timed mile event. The Vitality Westminster Mile’s events will start on The Mall, take in a lap of St James’ Park and finish outside the spectacular Buckingham Palace.
Former England cricket captain Andrew Strauss is set to lead the inaugural Ruth Strauss Foundation Family Mile alongside the entire England’s ICC Men’s World Cup squad. They will be running in memory of his wife, Ruth, who died in December 2018 from a rare form of lung cancer, and with their two sons.
The Vitality Wellness Festival in Green Park will play host to the Premier League trophy from 9am to 4pm, where visitors can get a selfie with the famous silverware, alongside a huge programme of free family-friendly activities, entertainment and fitness classes.
Running his first Vitality Westminster Mile is Downton Abbey star Jim Carter, who played the role of Mr Carson in the award-winning drama. Carson, who is an ambassador for the Special Olympics, will join the Unified Mile in partnership with the Special Olympics, which supports people with intellectual disabilities to foster inclusion and community through sport.
Bee Active, the Everyone Active mascot, will attempt a hat-trick of victories as the fastest mascot when he returns to the Vitality Westminster Mile as the reigning champion having beaten his mascot rivals in 2017 and 2018.
On the bank holiday Monday, some of Britain’s top runners will take on the Vitality London 10,000 including course record holder Sir Mo Farah, who will line up against two-time champion Andy Butchart. In the women’s race, Steph Twell will defend her title against reigning British 10,000m champion on the track, Charlotte Arter.
The iconic 10k course passes many of London’s famous sights including Admiralty Arch, Nelson’s Column, St Paul’s Cathedral, Mansion House, the Bank of England, the Old Bailey, Somerset House, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.
The Vitality London 10,000 course is ideal for spectators who will line the course to cheer on Farah as well as their friends and family. Participants will run along the Strand twice, at 2km and then again at 7km, making this a great place to watch the action.
The Vitality Wellness Festival will continue in Green Park and is an ideal spot to celebrate with those who have crossed the Finish Line.
In addition to the 22,000+ general entry runners, a special group of participants will take on the 10k course wearing nothing but their underwear to promote body confidence. Author Bryony Gordon and model Jada Sezer ran the 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon in their underwear, and now their ‘Celebrate You’ campaign has inspired a group of influential women that includes Andrea McLean of Loose Women, author Giovanna Fletcher, podcaster Deborah James and more, to join them.
Together, these women have inspired almost one thousand participants to run the Vitality London 10,000 en masse, with some joining Bryony and the team in running in their underwear to send a clear message that everyone should be proud of their bodies, no matter their shape or size.
For those who are not in London or can’t make it down to the course this weekend, catch all the action live for the first time in 2019:
Sunday, 26 May
0925 – 1230 on BBC Red Button
0925 – 1550 on BBC Online, Facebook and Twitter @WestminsterMile
Monday, 27 May
0950 – 1230 on BBC Red Button, BBC Online, Facebook and Twitter @London10k
Both events are sold out and entries for the 2020 Vitality Westminster Mile open on from Sunday 26 May at www.vitalitywestminstermile.co.uk. Entry is free for children under 12, £6 for children aged between 12 and 18 and £8 for adults. A £1 reduction is available for Westminster residents.