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stellar field set for british 10,000m championships

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Andy Vernon
8 May 2014

Saturday evening will see some of the UK’s best endurance runners line up at Parliament Hill Athletics Track in a bid to be crowned British Athletics 10,000m champion.

After the successful inaugural "Night of the 10,000m PBs" in 2013, Highgate Harriers are hoping to go one better in 2014 the event playing host to the British Athletics 10,000m Championships and also acting as the official trial race for the 2014 European Championships in Zurich later this summer, as well as the World Junior Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

Headlining the men’s field is the in-form Andy Vernon (coach: Nic Bideau), who earlier this winter made the 3,000m final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Poland. Since then he has gone on to smash his 5,000m personal best at the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invite in America, clocking 13.11 for the twelve and a half lap distance, the sixth fastest ever by a British athlete.

Despite being in the form of his life, Vernon certainly won’t have it all his own way, as he is joined on the start line by 2010 European 10,000m silver medallist and recent marathon debutant Chris Thompson (Alan Storey). Thompson comes to the track off the back off a 2.11.19 debut at the Virgin Money London Marathon, and is thriving from being back racing on the domestic scene.

Also likely to be in the hunt for medals is Vernon’s World Indoor Championship teammate Jonny Mellor (Steve Vernon), the Liverpool Harrier boasting a personal best of 28.42. There is also likely to be a Celtic battle between Scot Andrew Lemoncello and Wales’ Dewi Griffiths (Kevin Evans) with both men having already secured their respective nations’ Commonwealth Games qualifying standards.

The women’s race features an equally impressive line-up, including international interest from the 2012 and 2013 European Cross Country champions Fionnuala Britton and Sophie Duarte. Leading the way from a British perspective is likely to be Olympic seventh placer Jo Pavey (Gavin Pavey) who is returning from the birth of her second child.

Also in the mix will be Lily Partridge (Mick Woods) who clocked 32.51 on her 10,000m debut at the end of March, and has just returned from a spell at altitude.  Alyson Dixon heads south off the back of 2014 personal bests over 10k and the half marathon, the latter set whilst finishing 19th at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Copenhagen. Also likely to be to the fore is Sonia Samuels (Terrence Mahon) who just last week set a new 10,000m personal of 32.39 in America.

Race organiser Ben Pochee commented: "The 2014 event will try to quite literally turn up the volume on all aspects of our event, as we aim to make it an evening that attracts vociferously PB-hungry runners and even more vocal club spectators."

Entry is free to spectators who can fill lanes four to eight and hopefully provide an atmosphere that will spur the athletes on to personal bests.

The full timetable for the evening is as follows:

6pm – Mixed Race
6.45pm – Men’s C Race
7.30pm – Men’s B Race
8.15pm – Women’s A Race
9pm – Men’s A Race

To watch the event live courtesy of Vinco Sport’s stream of the event, follow this link: http://vsprt.com/1u3VwHz

You can also keep up to date with the event live on twitter by following @BritAthletics

For directions please search for Parliament Hill Athletics Track and use the postcode NW5 1QR.  The nearest stations are Belsize Park tube station or Gospel Oak overground.

Full start lists coming soon.