ST HELENS Sutton’s Gemma Connolly was among the thousands of runners who joined in Manchester’s response to the week’s tragic attack by competing in the Great Manchester Games.

Connolly, now in the youngest veterans class finished in 84th place in a field of more than 2,000 runners completing the 10k in 36 min.33 secs.

But more significantly she finished eighth in the elite women’s race which was incorporated within Saturday’s race and was the second veteran woman to finish.

This time represents a new personal best for Connolly who will make her England marathon debut later this year in the veterans international.

Meanwhile the following day Steve Anders recorded 79.52 for 62nd place in the Edinburgh Half Marathon.