4th October 2021
PURDUE AND SESEMANN FIRST BRITS AND WEIR EARNS PODIUM PLACE AT LONDON MARATHON
Charlotte Purdue and Philip Sesemann were the top British finishers in the women’s and men’s marathon races, while David Weir bagged a brilliant podium spot in the men’s wheelchair race.
Purdue (coach: Nic Bideau, club: Aldershot Farnham and District) moved to third on the UK all-time list with her time of 2:23.26 in the women’s race as she paced her run superbly to come home in tenth position overall. She now sits behind only Paula Radcliffe and Mara Yamauchi in the rankings.
Eilish McColgan acted as a pacemaker for the British athlete for a long spell of the race, going through on scheduled pace at halfway (1:11.44), and Purdue worked incredibly hard on her own over the last few miles as she improved her personal best by over two minutes.
Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei won the race in 2:17.43.
In the elite men’s race, on his marathon debut, Sesemann (Andrew Henderson, Leeds) was the highest-placed British finisher as he crossed the line in 2:12.58. The Leeds-based junior doctor ran superbly with the pacemaker, Jake Smith, for 20 miles and would ultimately hold on to be the first Brit to finish on the Mall.
Josh Griffiths (Carol Jones, Swansea), who caused a shock in 2017 when he was the first British finisher to qualify for that year’s World Championships, was next across the line in 2:13.39 for eighth place, while Matt Leach (Dena Evans, Bedford & County) and Andrew Davies (Steve Vernon, Stockport) wrapped up the top-ten of the men’s race in times of 2:15.31 and 2:15.36 respectively.
In the men’s elite wheelchair race, David Weir (Jenny Archer, Weir Archer Academy) showed his class as he outsprinted Brent Lakatos (CAN) for third place in his 22nd London Marathon race.
The six-time Paralympian was locked in battle with Lakatos and Aaron Pike (USA) in the final exchanges, but the Briton had too much for his opponents as he produced a devastating sprint to finish in a time of 1:31.33.
Paralympic champion Marcel Hug (SUI) won impressively in a time of 1:26.27 ahead of Daniel Romanchuk (USA) in 1:29.27.
Tokyo 2020 Paralympian JohnBoy Smith (Christine Parsloe) achieved his highest ever placing at the London Marathon in sixth, recording a time of 1:35.54.
In the elite women’s wheelchair race, Manuela Schar (SUI) was a convincing winner in a time of 1:39.52, while Shelly Woods (Pete Wyman, Blackpool, Wyre and Fylde) was the first British athlete in the race, pushing to a time of 1:50.11 for sixth place.