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UK Athletics

dixon leads gb & ni team at world half marathon champs

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Alyson Dixon
29 March 2014

Three athletes represented GB & NI at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Copenhagen today.

On a mild and sunny day in the Danish capital Alyson Dixon was the highest British finisher with a superb 18th place in the women’s race in a time of 70:37, a personal best by over 40 seconds.

Dixon was followed home by teammate Susan Partridge (coach: Steve Jones) who placed 40th in 73:15 while in the men’s race Ben Moreau (Ken Green) ran a time of 64:08 to finish 64th.

35 year old Dixon, who was third in the Reading half marathon last month, was part of the GB & NI team for this event when it was held in Birmingham in 2009 but was 27 places higher this time around and was delighted with her performance.

She said: “This week leading up to the race I’d felt really sluggish and woke up yesterday with a bit of a sore throat, so I was starting to doubt myself a bit. But I got out there and didn’t look at my watch until I could see the clock at the finish line.

“I had an idea I was on for a quick time from the athletes around me but I had no idea on the position. Groups were coming back to me which happens in major championships and I was moving through. The target was top 20 and I’ve just done that; I wasn’t concentrating on my time but to run a big PB – I can’t ask for much more than that.”

Meanwhile Partridge, who finished 22nd in the last World Half Marathon Championships in Bulgaria two years ago and tenth in the marathon at the World Championships in Moscow last summer, admitted that she wasn’t at her best this time around.

“It was fine,” she said. “I knew I wasn’t at my fittest but you stand on the start line and hope it will be fine. I was working hard from quite early on; sometimes you start and can feel great but this was kind of the opposite of that but it was fine.

“I ran 73 minutes and it could have been a lot worse. I’m not jumping for joy but for where I am at the moment it was OK.”

In the men’s race, Ben Moreau ran an excellent race and just missed out on bettering his personal best of 63:58 from last year, crossing the line ten seconds shy of that time in 64th place.

“It was good, I got into a decent group in the first 10km and was probably on PB pace and then started to slip a little bit where there were some windy sections. I felt OK but when I tried to pick it up I couldn’t maintain it.

“I actually thought I was further outside my PB, in the last 1km I didn’t have the legs and the group started to go. If I’d held on to them a bit longer I might have just got a PB.

“I’m happy with it; training has been OK in the last few weeks. I wasn’t sure if I was in great shape like I was last year so to run just outside my PB is good even when I’m not feeling absolutely fantastic.”

The next IAAF World Half Marathon Championships will be staged in Cardiff in March 2016.