Marathon runners enjoy sunny start

Celebrities pose before starting the race Photo: Toby Sadler

Tens of thousands of fun runners and amateur athletes set off in bright sunshine as the 32nd London Marathon got under way today.

Up to 37,500 athletes are expected to finish the 26.2-mile course through the streets of the capital to earn their marathon medals and raise money for countless charities.

As well as the elite athletes and fun runners, a host of celebrities crossed the start line in support of good causes.

Rugby league stars Steve Prescott and Paul Sculthorpe are hoping to complete a gruelling eight day challenge by completing the marathon today.

Prescott, 38, was diagnosed with a rare form of stomach cancer in 2006 and is aiming to raise £16,000 for his charitable foundation.

The former St Helens players have already completed the Paris marathon, cycled 184 miles through France, and kayaked across the English Channel.

James Cracknell, a double Olympic gold medal winner with the British rowing team, is aiming to continue his remarkable record of physical feats by running a third sub-three hour marathon.

The athlete recovered from a life-threatening head injury suffered while attempting to cycle, row, run and swim from Los Angeles to New York in under 16 days.

Start of London Marathon, 2012 Credit: Toby Sadler