Exeter Great West Run winner hits back at 'revolting' and 'twisted' comments

-Credit: (Image: Submitted)
-Credit: (Image: Submitted)

A doctor was slammed as "revolting" and "twisted" following her triumphant victory at The Great West Run. The runner strongly condemned the unsavoury remarks made in response to her proud achievement.

Anna Harold, a GP from Truro, came first in The Great West Run in Exeter. However, the mother-of-four received a barrage of hate including hurtful comments telling her she looked like a man.

As reported by Cornwall Live, the comments included one man calling her a "cheating bas***d". Other comments included: "My husband read the results out to me and I said 'that's a woman with a penis'."

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The doctor, 43, expressed her disbelief over the ill-mannered comments on the race results page, despite bagging the top position in what she categorised as a "reasonable but by no means elite time". "I was accused of being a trans man and called disgusting, revolting, twisted, vile, a disgrace, a cheat," Dr Harrold said.

"I am a mum of four, a GP and I run for fun. Being told I look just like a man and don’t conform to the ideals of being a female is upsetting enough but being called abusive names and threatened is awful. No need to do that to any individual, ever, no matter what you believe."

She added: "It wasn't the reaction I was expecting after winning the run. I've run loads of races and I've never had anything at all like this happen."

"I think in things like the Olympics males probably should not be competing as females but it's not my job to police and I don't think it is up to individuals to make claims against people.

"There's so much trans abuse now and I don't think many trans people want to enter and win The Great West Run anyway. They'd probably have no interest in doing this. But no individual deserves to be called the sorts of names they were calling me. There were hundreds of comments."

Anna Harrold -Credit:Submitted
Anna Harrold -Credit:Submitted

She won the female half marathon with a time of 1:19:28. In second place was Ruby Orchard, with a time of 1:27:19, followed by Hollie Fitzgerald with 1:28:52.

The Great West Run has since removed all comments and turned them off on its Facebook page for the post announcing the winners.

Meanwhile, a number of other people showed an overwhelming amount of love and support for the doctor. She was lauded as "an inspiration" and an "exceptional runner".

Among the comments, people said: "That is awful. You are a beautiful, inspirational woman."

"So sorry you have had to experience this Anna," added another. "You clearly work damn hard to get the results you do, some people just can’t accept that and are looking for excuses. Just keep running and winning and don’t let them get to you."

One remarked: "Gosh this is shocking! So sorry you’ve received and had to read such hurtful comments. Sadly people are always jealous of those who are talented and you’ve always been an exceptional runner, putting years of dedication into your sport. Please ignore the nasty trolls."

"You're an incredible mum, athlete, doctor and person! Don’t listen to these vile people. So sorry you’ve had to endure this after an amazing run."