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Last Updated: Monday, 11 April, 2005, 11:15 GMT 12:15 UK
London Marathon celeb-watch
Celebrities may be more glamorous and richer than most competitors in the London Marathon but you can be sure they feel the pain of those 26 miles just like the rest of us.

A whole host of famous faces will be putting their reputations on the starting line for the 25th running of the race on 17 April all in the name of charity.

Here is BBC Sport's handy guide to the renowned runners - or limping luminaries - to watch out for in this year's London Marathon.

GORDON RAMSAY

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay finishes the 2003 London Marathon
Explosive chef Gordon Ramsay is the big daddy of celebrity runners as he competes in the London Marathon for the sixth time.

The former Glasgow Rangers player may have had to retire from football because of injury but he will rely on his sporting background to survive the rigours of the 26-mile course.

Ramsay is as famous for his four-letter words as much as for his flair in the kitchen - and you can probably expect a few expletives as the race goes on.

The chef is racing to raise money for the Women's Aid Federation of England.

EASTENDERS V EMMERDALE

Eastender Chris Parker runs in his second straight London Marathon
Cast members of soap rivals EastEnders and Emmerdale ditch the race for ratings for a chance to go head-to-head for real on the streets of London.

Chris Parker - who plays Spencer Moon - leads the EastEnders team as a survivor of the 2004 London Marathon.

The 21-year-old is raising money for Comic Relief and will be joined by Ricky Groves (Garry Hobbs) and his partner, ex-Albert Square resident Hannah Waterman (Laura Beale).

Ricky is raising money for the Lord's Taverners while Hannah is racing for baby charity, Tommy's.

Emmerdale sends a six-strong team down to the capital captained by veteran soap star Chris Chittell, who plays scheming Eric Pollard.

Dominic Brunt (Paddy Kirk), Tony Audenshaw (Bob Hope), Nathan Gladwell (Syd Woolfe), Richard Moore (Jarvis Skelton) and John Middleton (John Jarvis) complete the team, who are raising cash for the Leukaemia Research Fund.

CHEEKY GIRLS

The Cheeky Girls
The twins from Transylvania turn their talents from, er, singing to running as they take on the London Marathon for the first time.

Monika and Gabriela Irimia failed to get beyond the auditions of TV talent show Popstars The Rivals but their unique singing style earned them a record deal and two hit singles.

They had just better hope fellow runners don't take the lyrics to the Cheeky Song (Touch my Bum) too seriously on race day.

RICHARD CABORN

Sports minister Richard Caborn
The minister for sport will be out to prove his sporting prowess as he confronts the physical demands of the marathon.

Caborn made headlines soon after his appointment in 2001 when he failed to get a single question correct on a radio quiz designed to test his sporting knowledge.

But he must be considered unlikely to beat the Parliamentary record for the 26-mile race held by former Conservative MP Matthew Parris, who clocked two hours, 32:57 minutes in 1985.

JO BRAND

Comic expert Jo Brand
The sardonic comedienne has admitted she could not find anyone slow enough to train with her as she prepared for her very first London Marathon.

But the star of Jo Brand's Hot Potatoes and QI panellist is determined to complete the course even if the furthest she has run before was one mile for Sport Relief.

This time Brand is back in action for one of her favourite charities, Comic Relief.

FORMER FOOTBALLERS

BBC pundit and former footballer Mark Bright
BBC pundit Mark Bright heads up a mini-team of former top-class footballers who aim to put their footwork to the test in the marathon.

Former Leeds player and manager Eddie Gray will lend his experience to the group, although he could get left behind by bustling former West Ham striker Tony Cottee.

The line-up is completed by Chelsea hero Tony Cascarino, former Watford and England striker Luther Blissett, ex-Wimbledon defender Warren Barton, Fulham cult hero Gordon Davies and ex-Aston Villa midfielder Garry Parker.

BEST OF THE REST

Blue Peter presenter Simon Thomas
Olympic rowers Sir Steve Redgrave, James Cracknell, Greg Searle and Cath Bishop
Former Great Britain swimmer Adrian Moorhouse
Children's television presenter Floella Benjamin
Television presenter Gail Porter
Television chef Ross Burden
Cutting It star Jason Merrells
Doctors actors Steve Hartley and Ben Jones
Olympic 3000m bronze medallist Yvonne Murray
Television presenters Anthea Turner and Lorraine Kelly



WATCH AND LISTEN
Take a virtual tour around the route of the London Marathon



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