WITH VIDEO: ‘Support the first 10k run without Steve’

St Helens Star: Members of the Steve Prescott Foundation including Steve's brother Neil (front), Martin Murray and Andy Reid are joined by the mayor Andy Bowden Members of the Steve Prescott Foundation including Steve's brother Neil (front), Martin Murray and Andy Reid are joined by the mayor Andy Bowden

THE brother of Steve Prescott this week called on Star readers to back the St Helens 10K run as the charity enters the first year without its figurehead.

Neil Prescott joined ambassadors for the SPF charity, sponsors and Mayor of St Helens, Andy Bowden, for a photo shoot that saw them pulling a double decker bus up North Road.

The Arriva bus sported the name Prescott and the number 1, to symbolise the rugby league jersey that Steve would wear. The charity has seen an “explosion” in the number of people wanted to do fundraising challenges since Steve passed away last November aged 39 following a seven year battle with cancer.

Nearly 800 people have already signed up to take part in the annual run, which is sponsored by GPW Recruitment. It will take place on Sunday, March 9, and organisers hope they are on course to reach the 1,800 capacity.

Speaking to the Star, Neil, 40, who maintained the Prescott tradition for taking on physical challenges by completing the Bolton Ironman last year, said: “This is important because it shows people that if we can conquer North Road anyone can.

“The 10k started a few years ago and more and more people have got involved and now it’s one of the biggest things in St Helens. I’ve done a lot of 10ks and an Ironman but this is a long drag. This today symbolises people coming together to take part in the run.

“A lot of people are getting on board and thanks to people like Martin (Blondel) it’s coming good again. This is a good town and plenty of people are giving their time up.

“I recently bumped into Eamonn McManus and thanked him for allowing us to use Saints’ stadium. It’s a fantastic setting for the event.”

Neil’s comments were backed by Martin Murray, the boxer who has been made an SPF ambassador.

He said: “Already this year’s event will see great improvements on last year. But we need to keep promoting the 10k to make it as special as it can be.

“It keeps Steve’s name living on and respects what he did for this town. It’s the least he deserves.”

Another of Steve’s pals, Andy Reid, the triple amputee ex-soldier and SPF ambassador, was equally determined that this year’s event is the best yet.

“This year will exceed expectations. The scale of the event is testament to the respect people have for Steve, how he continued to push himself.

He added: “Almost everyone has been touched my cancer so it is important that through events like this we find a cure.”

The course will see runners head over the bridge linking the town centre and Langtree Park site, which – as reported last week – will be renamed the Steve Prescott bridge.

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