One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1‘seven runners were limbering up’
sprinter, hurdler, racer, long-distance runner, cross-country runner
competitor, contender, participant, entrant
2‘a strawberry runner’
shoot, offshoot, sprout, tendril, sprig, sucker
technical stolon, flagellum
3‘bookmakers employed runners who ran round picking up bets’
messenger, courier, errand boy, messenger boy
North American informal gofer
run away, flee, run off, make a run for it, run for it, take flight, make off, take off, take to one's heels, make a break for it, bolt, beat a retreat, beat a hasty retreat, make a quick exit, make one's getaway, escape, head for the hills
beat it, clear off, clear out, vamoose, skedaddle, split, cut and run, leg it, show a clean pair of heels, turn tail, scram, hook it, fly the coop, skip off, do a fade
scarper, do a bunk
light out, bug out, cut out, peel out, take a powder, skidoo
go through, shoot through
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