Rugby legend Gareth Thomas named as Brighton Half Marathon’s official starter

This year’s 34th annual Rubix VT Brighton Half Marathon – which will take place on Sunday, February 25 – will be started by Welsh rugby legend Gareth Thomas.
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Thomas is one of the most iconic and respected figures in world rugby. He was the first Welsh player to reach 100 caps and captained both Wales and the British & Irish Lions.

In 2009, he became one of the first high profile sportsmen in the world to come out as gay while still playing. While he never downplays the significance of this achievement, he hopes to see a day when it is no longer an issue in the game at all.

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Thomas has continued to use his platform to champion issues close to him, sharing his own experiences with mental health in his award-winning autobiography Proud (2014), followed by Stronger (2021).

Gareth Thomas will be at the Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed pictureGareth Thomas will be at the Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed picture
Gareth Thomas will be at the Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed picture

In 2019, Thomas bravely told the world he was living with HIV. His BBC documentary, Gareth Thomas: HIV and Me, aired shortly afterwards and he has since launched a UK wide Tackle HIV campaign to help others with prejudice surrounding HIV.

On starting the Brighton Half Marathon Thomas said: “I am delighted to be supporting the Brighton Half Marathon which raises vital funds for local HIV charity The Sussex Beacon, an organisation which provides specialist care and support for people living with HIV and their families. Brighton is an incredible city; I am really looking forward to soaking up the atmosphere on race day.”

The Rubix VT Brighton Half Marathon is a UKA-certified event that features a stunning seafront course in one of the UK’s most vibrant cities. Every year 10,000 runners flock to Brighton to enjoy the fast, flat 13.1mile seafront course.

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General entry places are now sold out, but runners can still enter via one of the following charities including Say Aphasia, Taylor Made Dreams, Cystic Fibrosis Trust, WWF UK, Raystede and Grassroots, visit for more.

The Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed pictureThe Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed picture
The Brighton Half Marathon | Contributed picture

The event also features a wheelchair race which is sponsored by Yeomans Toyota, as well as a one-mile youth race started by DJ and presenter Woody Cook, and a charity relay race. The annual event is organised by E3 Sports Events on behalf of The Sussex Beacon.

Every year the race welcomes the support of hundreds of volunteers to help with course marshalling, drink stations, baggage facilities and handing out medals and goody bags. To become a volunteer click here.

Go to Brighton Half Marathon website for more information, join the Facebook page and follow @BrightonHalf on X.

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