High hopes for Valentine race

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Organisers of the Stamford St Valentine’s Race are hoping the 20th anniversary run will be extra special after last year’s race had to be cancelled due to snow and ice.

Despite gallant efforts by a large team of Stamford Striders to clear the 30km (18.6-mile) route, the 2012 event had to be called off for the first time in its history - this year a back-up date has been arranged just in case the snow returns before Sunday, February 17.

Race director Becca Brown said: “We tried everything possible to try to save last year’s event, and were all disappointed it had to be cancelled.

“We’re all determined to make 2013 the best year yet and it’s great that we can also celebrate the fact it will be the 20th race we have held.”

There are only a handful of places left in the 750 field.

The hilly course starts and finishes at Queen Eleanor School and winds its way through Little Casterton, Tolethorpe, Ryhall, Careby, Pickworth and Great Casterton.

The annual event is held on the closest Sunday to Valentine’s Day and each km marker is in the shape of a heart. The course record is 1h38m55 set by Martin Cox, from Bristol and West Running Club, in 2005.