Dame Kelly Holmes credits Prince for helping her complete first marathon


Double Olympic winner Dame Kelly Holmes has credited the music of Prince for keeping her relaxed as she took on her first marathon alongside thousands of others in a record-breaking year for the race.

Dame Kelly was one of a host of big names signed up for this year's event including Top Gear host Chris Evans and Game Of Thrones actress Natalie Dormer.

Speaking after the race she said she felt happy but sore. She told the Press Association: "I'm really proud of myself, I'm in a bit of pain now, obviously. My legs are aching beyond belief. But it is an amazing feeling to think I've done it."

Asked would she do it again she said: "At this moment, no."

Prince performing on stage
Prince (Gareth Fuller/PA)

The sportswoman, who had her nails painted different colours honouring experienced runner Eddie Izzard, the Queen and Prince, said the musician, who died last week, helped keep her calm.

She said: "At nine miles I had Purple Rain on, I was loving it. At nine miles I needed to calm. I felt so good and the crowd were brilliant. That came on and I had a little bit of a smile because I had my nails painted for him as well."

She added: "He kept me in control. When he came on I was like 'smile, relax' and that's what I did."

British astronaut Tim Peake may have been miles away in space but he was just behind Dame Kelly in terms of time in the marathon, claiming a new Guinness World Records title for the fastest marathon in orbit.

The spaceman, who ran the marathon while strapped to a treadmill 400km above earth on board the International Space Station, completed it in three hours and 35 minutes, just minutes behind Dame Kelly's finish time of three hours and 11 minutes.