The Brighton Marathon celebrated its second year in style with two new sparkling course records on yet another morning of glorious sunny weather.
All the plaudits were for the women’s winner Alyson Dixon who obliterated the course record by over half an hour.
The Liz McColgan coached Dixon demolished the inaugural time by a full 30mins and into the bargain set a qualifying time of 2:34:51 for the World championships in Daegu later this summer.
After two training spells in Kenya this winter, McColgan forecast at least a personal best for Dixon (by well over eight minutes as it turned out) but was
ecstatic about the world championship qualifying time: “She is in fantastic shape and she showed it today.
There is more to come. She only started running seriously at the age of 33. She did exactly today what we planned and stuck to the splits we had set ourselves. Now let’s see if she is picked for Daegu.”
“The course is good,” said Dixon, but I found the first hill difficult. I had a bad patch at eight miles and I started to suffer but I managed to recover by half-way. At 23-24 miles I was suffering again but Richard Nerurkar (Elite athlete coordinator) was shouting encouragement and that helped a lot. I was hoping for a personal best, but to qualify for the world championships is amazing. I am so delighted.”
Second woman was Lucy MacAlister in 2:40:35 with Julie Briscoe third in a time of 2:41:11. In fourth Jenny Blizard set a personal best 2:46:01 while Bryce broke 3hrs for the first time with a time of 2:59:39. Local athlete Jo Bryce held the record from 2010 of 3:04:55.
On the men’s side, Kenya’s Philemon Kiprop Boit smashed the record by almost three minutes, breaking the tape in 2:16:07. The previous benchmark of 2:19:05 stood to Mongolian B. Serod from 2010. Second was compatriot, Richard Bett Rotich (2:16:32) and third, Ethiopian Ambessa Tolosa, a further 21sec adrift.
Kiprop said he was happy, but the course was tough, especially the first half. But he hopes to come back next year and run a better time. Bett described the course as challenging. He said the second half was a lot better. He tried to push Kiprop, but he was just too strong for him.
First Briton home was Stroud’s Dan Robinson in fourth place, just outside the previous course record in a detached 2:19:11.