HOW MARK POPPED THE QUES­TION ON HALF MARATHON FIN­ISH­ING LINE

COU­PLE RAN THE RACE TO­GETHER, BUT SARAH HAD NO IDEA WHAT HE WAS PLAN­NING:

Glamorgan Gazette - - Front Page - ABBY BOLTER abby.bolter@waleson­line.co.uk

A MAN ran the en­tire Cardiff Half Marathon course hid­ing a box con­tain­ing an en­gage­ment ring in his hand while his girl­friend ran be­side him.

Mark Har­ris kept it so well hid­den he was able to shock Sarah Dow­son with a pro­posal as they crossed the fin­ish line.

“My knee hurt for the last five kilo­me­tres so Mark ac­tu­ally held my hand and must’ve had the ring in the other hand the whole time,” said Sarah, 30, a fit­ness in­struc­tor at Brid­gend Life Cen­tre.

Obliv­i­ous to what was about to hap­pen, Sarah then be­came dis­tracted try­ing to turn off her run­ning app when she re­alised Mark was call­ing her name.

“He was call­ing me and I didn’t hear him, then he grabbed me and turned me around. It was a big shock,” she said. “We are pri­vate peo­ple so it was com­pletely out of char­ac­ter for him to do some­thing like this in pub­lic.”

Their friend An­drew Hill had run the course on Sun­day morn­ing with them and was able to take pic­tures of the mo­ment Mark pro­posed.

Sarah said “yes” straight away and now she and her PCSO fi­ancé, who works in Maesteg, are plan­ning a wed­ding abroad in around two years’ time.

“I didn’t have any idea at all,” said Sarah, who lives with Mark in Broad­lands, Brid­gend, and has a son Ol­lie, aged five.

The cou­ple have been to­gether for three years and Sarah said Mark’s love of run­ning en­cour­aged her to take up the sport too.

“He did the long course week­end in Tenby this sum­mer and watch­ing him train mo­ti­vated me,” said Sarah.

“I also thought ‘I’m turn­ing 30 so I’ll do the Cardiff Half’.

“Mark trains with An­drew and he ran to­gether with us and was pac­ing me and mak­ing sure I was on track for the two hours.”

She said her son Ol­lie was de­lighted when they shared the news of their en­gage­ment.

“Ol­lie was re­ally ex­cited about it.

“He gets on very, very well with Mark and they are re­ally close.”

Sarah Dow­son, 30, and Mark Har­ris, 32, from Brid­gend, got en­gaged at the fin­ish line of the Cardiff Half Marathon after Mark sur­prised Sarah with a pro­posal

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