5th April 2023
TRAIL RACE ATHLETES SELECTED FOR THE 2023 WORLD MOUNTAIN AND TRAIL RUNNING CHAMPIONSHIPS
Several trail athletes have been selected to compete for Great Britain and Northern Ireland at the World Mountain and Trail Running Championships in Innsbruck-Stubia, Austria on 6-10 June 2023.
In the first wave of selections, eight athletes have been selected to represent the country in the long trail race, while four athletes have been pre-selected for the short trail race with the rest of the squad announced in May.
In the women’s event, Jasmin Paris (coach: Damien Hall, club: Carnethy HRC) will represent GB & NI for the first time since 2019 when she raced at the IAU Ultra Trail Championships in Portugal. In recent weeks she became only the second woman ever to complete four loops of the Barkley marathon (a 100-mile event in the USA), so will head into the race in strong form.
She will be joined by Meryl Cooper (David Roche, Deeside Runners) who represented the country at the World Championships in Thailand last November where she finished in 34th position. Julia Davis (Robbie Britton, Newquay RR) and Fiona Pascall (Martin Cox) will make their debuts for Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
In the men’s race, Harry Jones (Martin Cox, Mynydd Du) – who was GB & NI’s top finisher in the 2022 edition with an 11th place finish in Thailand – is selected once again. He will be joined by George Foster (Martin Cox, Matlock), who also raced in Chiang Mai, and won the Trans Gran Canaria advanced race (85km / 4500m) in February in a course record.
Owen Davies (self-coached) and Thomas Joly De Lotbiniere (self-coached) earn their maiden call-ups to complete the men’s quartet. The duo finished third and fourth respectively at the Trans Gran Canaria race.
As per policy, athletes who achieved a top ten finish at the 2022 World Mountain and Trail Running Championship in the short trail race receive automatic selection. Therefore, world bronze medallist Jon Albon and Kristian Jones (Swansea), and Elsey Davis (self-coached, Preston) and Sharon Taylor (Helm Hill) have been pre-selected subject to fitness for the GB & NI team. The rest of the short trail team will be selected after the Trial race – the Three Peaks race – later this month.
The Great Britain and Northern Ireland team for the Long Trail races at the World Mountain and Trail Running Championships:
Long Trail Race
Owen Davies (self-coached)
George Foster (Martin Cox, Matlock)
Thomas Joly De Lotbiniere (self-coached)
Harry Jones (Martin Cox, Mynydd Du)
Meryl Cooper (David Roche, Deeside Runners)
Julia Davis (Robbie Britton, Newquay RR)
Jasmin Paris (Damien Hall, Carnethy HRC)
Fiona Pascall (Martin Cox)
Short Trail Race
Elsey Davis (self-coached, Preston)
Sharon Taylor (Helm Hill)
Kristian Jones (Swansea)
*photo credit: Jacob Adkin