AN athletics legend was on hand to launch a series of sporting events which will have people Cram-ing into the city to compete.

Former world record holder and Olympic medallist Steve Cram unveiled the Worcester 10k and the Worcester City Run Bike Run races, which will take place on Sunday, September 21, at Pitchcroft Racecourse yesterday.

The running legend said he hoped the events would bring people to the area.

“These sports are going to be very important in the city and people are keen to join in,” he said.

“The events are big in the world and they are part of life now. What we’re trying to offer is an event that has something to offer to everyone.”

The Run Bike Run, a duathlon, will be a 10k run, followed by 44k cycle, and finishing with a 5k run, which Cram said he would be prepared to enter himself.

“I’m a big believer in finding out what it is like from a competitor’s point of view, so I may well compete in the first year’s event,” he said.

Adrian Gregson, leader of Worcester City Council, said: “These events will bring in new tourism, over night stays and people who may not have been here before. We’re trying to be ambitious about opening up for people and these kinds of events showcase the city, but so far it’s been a bit of a hidden jewel.”

Mr Cram added: “There are lots of city events like these and one of the good things council’s do is encourage people who take part to come to Worcester and take part in these ones.”

The former international athlete was joined by 15-year-old Nixie Turner, a local triathlete who won last year’s Worcester Race for Life, and other members of the Worcester Triathlon Club.

Nixie said she joined Worcester Triathlon Club after trying out the three sports as a youngster and would encourage anyone to give it a go.

She said: “I always tried to beat my brothers and they ended up quitting because I became better than them.”

The official charity partner for the events is COCO – Comrades of Children Overseas – which was started when co-founders Steve Cram and Jim Panton ran the 56-mile Comrades Marathon in South Africa in 1999, but entrants can compete for their own charities.