Hearts fan, 10, to squeeze in 2km race at Edinburgh Marathon Festival before cup final

For most Hearts fans, there is only one event worth feeling nervous about this weekend – but with the Edinburgh Marathon Festival also in full swing on Saturday, some supporters are going the extra mile in showing their dedication to the club.

Friday, 24th May 2019, 8:05 pm
Kenneth Manson

Ten-year-old Kenneth Manson for the two kilometre children’s race on Saturday.

With the race due to start 2.30pm, Kenneth’s mum Michelle will be anxiously waiting in the parent spectators pen, with her son’s Jambo teddy-bear, to get home in time for the Cup Final kick-off at 3pm.

“My brother and I have promised we will pause the TV and wait for Kenneth to finish the race to watch the game all together,” Michelle said. Kenneth has been training five times a week with his mum in preparation for Saturday’s race, which he hopes to complete in 17 minutes.

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Kenneth said: “I think it’s fun to help your body get faster.

“I’m going to hug my mum when I cross the finish line and then race home to watch the game with her and my uncle.”

Running to raise much needed funds for the Heart of Midlothian FC charity Big Hearts Community Trust, Sophie Smith will be taking part in three events over the marathon festival weekend. On track to run the half marathon on Sunday and the five and ten kilometre races on Saturday, Sophie will run a total of 22.7 miles on behalf of the charity.

Sophie shared her nerves ahead of the race as well as the match.

“I always get nervous before races,” she said.

“I’ll be watching the game with my mum, probably from behind the sofa and through my fingers.”

Sophie started running with the Big Hearts running club from Tynecastle Park only two years ago and now helps to lead the weekly sessions.

“There are around 19 runners from Big Hearts this year. The best part is seeing all of their faces at the finish line,” she said.

Big Hearts provide free meals to local families affected by food poverty. Holiday hunger is one of the main challenges faced by school pupils in the community around Tynecastle.