Athletics: Marathon runner dies

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The Independent Online
A middle-aged male runner became the fifth fatality in the London Marathon's 17-year history yesterday. Dr Dan Tunstall Pedoe, medical director of the Flora London Marathon, confirmed that the competitor - believed to be around 40 years old - had collapsed on the course.

After being attended to by the St John Ambulance Brigade paramedics, he was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead. The runner's name, Tunstall Pedoe said, would not be released until relatives had made a positive identification.

"We express our condolences to the relatives," he said. "Although these things happen, we do our best to prevent them."

All of the record 29,000 competitors taking part yesterday had received medical advice sheets and had been warned of the symptoms of heart disease.

With weather conditions close to ideal, casualties were running four to five times lower than last year's event, Tunstall Pedoe said, with only 16 runners being admitted to hospital at the time of the announcement.

Marathon reports, page 8-9