13 APRIL 2008

Tens of thousands of runners set off on the London Marathon today and as ever, there were several famous faces who ignored the dismal weather and joined them pounding the pavements.

Running his ninth marathon was celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, who was raising money for a variety of good causes, including spina bifida. Being an old-hand at the 26-mile challenge didn't make things any less rigorous for the Michelin-star winner. "It doesn't get any easier," he admitted.

Fresh from Saturday night's return of her hit TV show Britain's Got Talent, actress Amanda Holden looked bright and breezy as she ran for the Born Free Foundation. The charity's patron prepared for six months for the marathon.

Hoping to complete the course in four-and-a-half hours, the Cutting It star admitted that afterwards she planned to "watch the Antiques Roadshow, have a couple of glasses of wine and eat fish and chips".

Also making their mark were Boyzone's lead singer Ronan Konan and soap stars Vicky Binns and Phil Daniels. Ex-Olympic rower James Cracknell and TV presenter Ben Fogle used the marathon as a training run for their 400-mile race to the South Pole in November. In an impressive display, James managed the course in just inside three hours.

Meanwhile, showing you can be stylish and fit was former Big Brother winner Kate Lawler. In her skimpy two piece designed by Ann Summers, the TV presenter helped raise thousands for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Photo: © Alphapress.com
Admitting it "doesn't get easier", chef Gordon Ramsay smiles as he crosses the line marking the end of his ninth marathon. He has just one left to do to complete the personal challenge he has set himself Photo: © Getty Images Click on photos for gallery
Photo: © Alphapress.com
Amanda Holden and Kate Lawler look fit and fresh as they wait for the race to beginPhoto: © Getty Images
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