Northern Ireland

Local woman wins at Walled City Marathon

Finish line
Image caption Catherine Whoriskey won the women's race in a time of two hours and 50 minutes

A woman from Londonderry has triumphed at the SSE Walled City Marathon.

Catherine Whoriskey took the women's race title after finishing in a time of two hours and 50 minutes.

Her victory is the latest in an impressive year of competitions, including a win at the Lifford-Strabane Half Marathon in May.

The men's contest was won by last year's runner-up, Dan Tanui, in a time of two hours and 25 minutes.

'Nervous'

Intermittent bursts of rain provided welcome respite from the humid conditions as 1,500 runners took to the streets of Derry.

At the finish line, Mr Tanui said: "I feel good and I am grateful to have won this race today.

"I felt nervous before the race, but once I completed the first half I knew I would win.

"I have come here three or four times now and I am happy I came here today."

Image caption The event finished at Guildhall Square in Derry

The gruelling 26.2 mile event began at 08:30 BST on Sunday and thousands of spectators lined the race route on both sides of the River Foyle to watch the sporting spectacle.

'Beat on the street'

The race started from the Everglades Hotel on Prehen Road and finished at Guildhall Square.

Image caption Thousands of spectators lined the race route

One great source of encouragement for the competitors was provided by local man Alan Warke who annually positions himself at the top of a steep hill on Fahan Street near the conclusion of the race and plays drums to spur runners on.

He told BBC News NI: "I have been doing this for a few years now.

"I've been here since 07:45 this morning and the drums help the runners put the beat on the street."

All runners received a bespoke Walled City Marathon Medal, a t-shirt and a goodie bag at the finish line.

Medical support was provided by St John's Ambulance, doctors and around 50 first-aiders.