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Kehler and Kupidis take Carnegie GP titles

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Race Walking

Theodorous Koupidis (Greece) and Lisa Kehler (Wolverhampton & Bilston) were victorious at the Carnegie Racing Walking Grand Prix, incorporating the UK Challenge, over a testing course around the picturesque Headingley Campus of Leeds Metropolitan University. The athletes faced unseasonably blustery conditions.


Race Walking

The women’s 20km resulted in a victory for Great Britain’s Kehler around the campus where she studied for her Masters Degree. The early pace was set by Athena Papagianni of Greece, who was sixth in the 2005 IAAF World Athletics Championships. She has returned to form after 2 years blighted by injury and was chasing the Greek qualifying time for Osaka. She was well up on the required pace, passing the 5km mark in 23.15. She continued to move at this pace passing the halfway mark in just under 47 minutes. However, she was soon to retire due to stomach problems. This left the way clear for Kehler to take the victory in 1.46.04, ahead of Scotland’s Verity Snook (Aldershot, Farnham and District).


Race Walking

In the Men’s 20km the early pace was cut out by Daniel King (Colchester Harriers), Recep Celik (Turkey) and Kazmir Verkin (Slovakia), with Theodorous Koupidis a few steps behind. The leading trio pulled away and passed the 5km point in just over 21 minutes, spot on the pace for the IAAF B standard for Osaka. Soon after this point Celik was removed by the judges leaving King, Verkin and Koupidis to set the pace. King was the next to fall foul of the judges around the halfway point as the leader Koupidis passed 10km in just over 43 minutes, followed by Vekin and Dominic King (Colchester Harriers).


The strong wind began to take it toll as Verkin battled the conditions in the second half, coming home in 1.31.32. Kazmir Verkin held on for second place in 1.34.02. Dominic King struggled in the last 5km, but held on for third place in a season’s best of 1.35.32.


The Junior Men’s 5km was won by Simon Hambridge (Nuneaton Harriers) in 25.46 ahead of his twin brother Mark Hambridge (Nuneaton Harriers). The Junior Women’s 5km resulted in a 1-2 for Ireland, with Donna Carolan taking the title in 27.01, ahead of her compatriot Sorcha Prendiville. Natalie Myers (City of Sheffield AC) was third.


The open 5km race resulted in a victory for Ireland’s David Kidd in 22.31.

Race Walking