Paula Radcliffe will receive the inaugural John Disley London Marathon Lifetime Achievement Award when she completes the 2015 Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday 26 April.
The women’s world record holder will run what is expected to be her final competitive race at the 35th London Marathon - an event she won three times in four years between 2002 and 2005. Radcliffe, who opened the 2015 Virgin Money London Marathon Expo at London’s ExCeL on Wednesday morning, will be presented with the trophy by John Disley, who co-founded the event with Chris Brasher in 1981.
Radcliffe smashed the women’s world record with her second London Marathon victory in 2003, still almost three minutes faster than any other woman in history has completed the 26.2-mile distance, and she broke the world record for a women’s only race on her last appearance 10 years ago, a time that still stands as the official London Marathon course record.
Now 41, she has fought back from a serious foot injury to be able to run one last time in the event which first inspired her as a child in the early 1980s when she travelled to London from her home in Bedford to watch her father run. Radcliffe will start among the British championships runners this year and will be presented with her trophy after the elite race presentations at the end of her race. This new London Marathon award will be made to people who have made an outstanding contribution to the event – whether they are an elite runner, a charity runner, or an official.
Race director Hugh Brasher welcomed Radcliffe back to the London Marathon.
“We are delighted to have Paula running with us again this year,” said Brasher. “I can’t think of a more deserving inaugural winner of the John Disley London Marathon Lifetime Achievement Award.
“Anyone who saw Paula’s world record in 2003 will remember it as one of the outstanding athletics performances of our time. She is one of only three women to win the race more than twice and her attitude and achievements have played a huge role in boosting women’s running.”
runABC is in attendance at London Marathon Expo at Stand 341. Come along and say hello to the team and pick-up a copy of the launch edition of runABC South and runABC North.