Brighton Marathon made a comeback under new management after the event’s future was thrown into doubt last year.

More than 7,000 runners pounded the streets of the city as they ran for quick times and good causes.

It was a quieter affair this year, but after the uncertainty of whether the event would even go ahead after former organisers Grounded Events collapsed in November and London Marathon Events swooped in to save the day, everyone seemed glad just to be back.

The Argus: Brighton Marathon start lineBrighton Marathon start line (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

The weekend had already kicked off on Saturday with the Mini Mile for youngsters in Preston Park.

On Sunday, the 10k was the first to begin at Hove Lawns before the marathon started in Preston Park at 9.45am.

Brighton residents and stars of RuPaul’s Drag Race Alfie Ordinary and Joe Black waved the starting flag with Joe Black saying, “b**** you better run”.

The Argus: Alfie Ordinary and Joe Black at the start lineAlfie Ordinary and Joe Black at the start line (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

Runners left the park and headed up to Withdean before turning back down London Road towards the city.

The streets were lined with supporters, many of who held encouraging signs aloft and cheered.

The Argus: The runners were not short of supportThe runners were not short of support (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

Even Hove DJ Fatboy Slim, real name Norman Cook, came out to add his support.

The Argus: Norman Cook with a runnerNorman Cook with a runner (Image: Andy Gardner)

The route passed many of the city’s landmarks including St Peter’s Church, the Royal Pavilion and the Palace Pier.

The race was finally won by Marshall Smith from Ashford in Kent, who was 12 minutes ahead of the rest of the field by the time he finished.

The Argus: Marshall SmithMarshall Smith (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

It was the 22-year-old’s first ever marathon and he completed it in 2:24:07.

“The atmosphere all the way round was electric,” he said.

“A brilliant crowd and a really good course.

“The first few miles were really hilly, but it all went to plan.”

Helen Reid, from London, took the women’s title with a time of 2:55:11.

The 29-year-old’s mother-in-law lives in Brighton and Helen had decided to take on the marathon as part of a weekend away.

The Argus: Helen ReidHelen Reid (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

“Me and my partner thought we’d make a weekend of it,” she said.

“We came down and brought our dog.

“I’d definitely do it again, it was so much fun.

“It was nice going over the cliffs towards Ovingdean.

“The crowds were great, it really carries you when you’re feeling tired.”

Many runners were taking part for causes close to their hearts.

The Argus: Iain ChivertonIain Chiverton (Image: Iain Chiverton)

Iain Chiverton, from Chichester,was airlifted by an air ambulance in the Midlands following a crash a few years ago.

He was so impressed that he wanted to support the equivalent service in his home area – Air Ambulance Charity Kent Surrey Sussex.

"I loved the experience, the support from people is phenomenal, especially when they say your name,” he said.

“I am very pleased with a sub four hour time. At 23 miles I was just intent not to stop.

“This will probably be my first and last marathon - at least my hips and knees are telling me that - but I did love it and am proud to have raised more than £2,000.”

Andrew Fountain, 54, from Cowfold, was running in aid of the hospital that saved his son’s life.

Twenty nine years ago, Andrew’s eldest son Eddie was born needing life-saving surgery. Eddie spent six months in and out of intensive care at the Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton and remained under its care until he turned 19.

The Argus: Andrew FountainAndrew Fountain (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

Liam Murphy, who is head of PE at Cardinal Newman Catholic School in Hove, was running to raise money for the school’s sport’s department.

“I’m happy I’m finished,” said Mr Murphy, who is from Southwick.

“It’s the first I’ve done.

“I’m running for the school to try and raise money to help our sports department achieve more.

“Twenty six miles of pain will hopefully mean success for the school.

“The support’s been amazing, the school’s been out. When you’re down and need a pick me up they’re there screaming your name saying ‘you can do it’.

“Even in the last 500 metres when you think you’re going to die they’re still supporting you.”

Mike Mears, from Devon, donned a clown costume to run for mental health charity Mind.

The Argus: Mike MearsMike Mears (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

It was the 52-year-old’s 45th marathon.

Before it began he said he was “excited” to get going, but after completing the 26-mile course he said it was “horrific”.

Kenta Matsumoto, who made The Argus’s front page after he had an emotional finish at February’s Brighton Half Marathon, was back in action for the full marathon.

The Argus: Kenta MatsumotoKenta Matsumoto (Image: Andrew Gardner / The Argus)

The 34-year-old student at the University of Sussex was as equally emotional as he finished his first full marathon.

“It was amazing,” he said. “I really appreciate the support from all the people cheering me on.”

Claire Foreman, from Wrexham, crossed the finish line with her five-year-old daughter Frankie.

The Argus: Claire Foreman with her daughter FrankieClaire Foreman with her daughter Frankie (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

The 43-year-old police officer said completing the marathon was “a big personal achievement”.

“It’s my 11th marathon, it never gets easier,” she said.

“Frankie finished a triathlon with me once and loved it so she wanted to support me to the finish.

“It was a great boost.”

Nuala Smith, from Angmering, sported an eye-catching cow hat as she ran her 191st marathon.

The 58-year-old civil servant has been running in the Brighton Marathon since 2010.

The Argus: Nuala SmithNuala Smith (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

“I did Barcelona marathon so I was exhausted,” she said.

“It was really hard but my family were out and they kept me going.

“I love Brighton. I did a run in 2016 and the theme was cows and I just always wear it to Brighton and London now because all the kids go ‘moo moo’.”

Organisers are already looking forward to next year’s marathon, with plans in the works to make the event a “celebration of Brighton”.

The Argus: Runners todayRunners today (Image: The Argus/Andrew Gardner)

Hugh Brasher, event director of the Brighton Marathon Weekend, said: “When London Marathon Events took on the Brighton Marathon Weekend, we knew it was a special set of events but today has surpassed our expectations. 

“To see so many people on the streets and at our new finish area at Hove Lawns, cheering on thousands of participants throughout the day, many of them raising crucial funds for charities, has been a special experience.

"We are already looking forward to how we can build on this and make the Brighton Marathon Weekend even more spectacular in future years.”

Entries are now open for the 2024 Brighton Marathon and BM10K which will take place on Sunday, April 7, 2024.