24th October 2019
11-STRONG BRITISH TEAM SET FOR IAU 24 HOUR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
Twelve of Britain’s best 24-hour runners are gearing up for the IAU 24-Hour World Championships in Albi, France this weekend (26-27 October).
The British contingent will be led by Dan Lawson (Allison Benton; unattached), who claimed the European title in 2016 and will be a key pillar in hoping to spearhead the British contingent to a medal.
Fellow medallists from previous championships, James Stewart (Paul Giblin; Victoria Park City of Glasgow) and Steve Holyoak (Road Runners Club) will once again don the British vest, with the latter looking for his second medal on the world stage having previously claimed team bronze in 2015.
Alongside their experience, three men will earn themselves British vests for the first time as Michael Stocks (Norman Wilson; London Heathside), Grant MacDonald (Paul Giblin; Garscube) and Paul Maskell (St Austell) make their debuts.
The team will look to win Great Britain & Northern Ireland’s first team medal at the championships since 2015, where Robbie Britton took individual bronze in Turin alongside winning team gold medal.
With two of last year’s top three absent, the main danger will come from Sweden’s Johan Steene who claimed third place in Belfast two years ago, while,
2018 European team bronze medallists Wendy Whearity (Reading Joggers) and Ali Young (Bryan Smith; Chiltern) will lead the senior women’s team, who will be hoping for a first team medal since 2012 when they claimed bronze in Katowice, Poland.
Last year, illness reaped havoc to the British team leaving only three British women able to finish, but will hope for a better run of things this time around and to get a full compliment of runners completing the 24 hours.
Jess Baker (Andy Dubois; Road Runners Club) boasts the largest personal best in the field by over 10km, with a best of 237.0613km set in 2017 in Belfast and will be a strong contender to be in and around the podium places.
In a change to the original team named back in February, Catherine Simpson (Norman Wilson; Fulham) comes into the team for her British debut following the withdrawal of Tracy Dean and Samantha Amend from the squad through injury.
She will make her debut in a 24 hour race but has distance experience over similar endurance events, having amassed a 245.3km effort in just under 29 hours in Sparta, Greece last year and has enjoyed a good record in multi-terrain races this year.
The Brits will be hoping to win a first team medal since they won bronze in 2012, missing out on the silver medal by less than 50m but will have the task of going up against defending world and Championship record holder Patrycja Bereznowska (POL), who racked up 259.991km in the 2017 edition of the championships to take victory.
The British Athletics team for the IAU 24 Hour World Championships in Albi, France on 26-27 October 2019:
Jess Baker (Andy Dubois; Road Runners Club)
Sarah Morwood (James Elson; Bere Alston)
Catherine Simpson (Norman Wilson; Fulham)
Wendy Whearity (Reading Joggers)
Ali Young (Bryan Smith; Chiltern)
Steve Holyoak (Road Runners Club)
Dan Lawson (Allison Benton; Unattached)
Grant MacDonald (Paul Giblin; Garscube)
Paul Maskell (St Austell)
James Stewart (Paul Giblin; Victoria Park City of Glasgow)
Michael Stocks (Norman Wilson; London Heathside)