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- 29 January 2015 00:00
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Paula Radcliffe is to finish her marathon career in London this year
26th April 2015 ... a date to put in the Diary!
41 year old, legendary marathon runner, Paula Radcliffe hasn’t competed over 26.2 miles since Berlin in 2011, but is back to finish her extraordinary marathon career on home soil this year.
Paula will be up against a very strong field including the defending champion and two-times world champion, Edna Kiplagat and her fellow Kenyan Florence Kiplagat. Edna Kiplagat sprinted to victory on The Mall last year beating Florence by just 3 seconds in the closest women’s race for 17 years.
Other competitors running to claim the title are Priscah Jeptoo and Mary Keitany, both former London Marathon champions. Keitany’s return to the London marathon, adds another exciting dimension to 2015’s line up as she is undefeated over the London course, with her fastest time 2:18:37, a time only Paula Radcliffe has beaten. Having won the London marathon 3 times, Mary Keitany is aiming to make 2015 number 4, and being the quickest in this year’s line up by more than a minute, makes for an interesting race.
Paula: "Florence will be hungry to win after getting so close last year, and both Priscah and Mary will be doing their best to regain the No1 spot. We have all had some great races in London in the past and I am sure it will be even better this year.”
Gruelling hours of training, commitment and determination have fuelled Paula’s results, leading to her highlights of winning multiple marathons across the globe, becoming "female athlete of the year 2002”, an Olympian and a world record holder...an inspirational woman and exceptional athlete.
Paula’s first World Record was at the Chicago Marathon 2002 in a time of 2:17:18 but managed to beat her own record at the 2003 London Marathon in a time of 2:15:25...a celebration Britain will never forget.
Paula’s successes haven’t come without hard work and setbacks. Returning to training after becoming a mother to a baby girl in 2006, Paula suffered a stress fracture in her back which meant she was unable to compete at the 2007 World Championships in Japan. However, dedication, focus and above all resilience, saw her win the New York Marathon later that year in an exciting duel with Ethiopia’s Gete Wami.
Paula admits: "You can’t stay elite forever. It is a small window, age gets to everybody. That you can rationally accept. Turning off the competitive side within yourself is a little bit harder.”
Paula is an inspirational role model to women across the nation and I’m sure Britain will be in full support as she competes in her last London Marathon.
If you feel inspired by Paula, why don’t you give the Royal Parks half marathon a go! ...https://royalparkshalf.com/Enter-the-ballot/