Ben Connor and Charlotte Purdue are among a strong Britsh team announced for the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships on March 24.
The 23rd edition of the championships take place in Valencia and joining Connor in the men’s selection are Luke Traynor, Tsegai Tewelde, Mohamud Aadan and Dan Studley.
While Purdue is joined in the women’s team by Gemma Steel, Charlotte Arter, Tracy Barlow and Faye Fullerton.
On Sunday at the inaugural Big Half, 26-year-old Purdue clocked 70:29 to lower her personal best by exactly a minute on the way to victory in the race that also incorporated the British Half Marathon Championships.
Also in London competing in only her second half marathon was Arter who ran a big personal best 71:31 to finish third. While Steel, who is Britain’s fastest 13.1 miler that is still competing, also makes the team having raced at the Doha Half Marathon in January.
Havering’s Fullerton also enjoyed a 74.04 PB at the Big Half on Sunday and makes the team alongside World Championships marathoner Tracy Barlow.
Meanwhile, Connor heads the men’s selection, having enjoyed a fine cross country season before running a big personal best 61:11 to finish eighth at the Barcelona Half Marathon last month.
Another runner also in PB form that day was Luke Traynor who crossed the line in 61:55 one place behind Connor in only his second race over the distance.
Completing the team is British Olympic marathoner Tewelde, while Aadan and Studley will wear the GB vest for the first time in Valencia.
“We have chosen a full squad of ten for the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia as we seek to achieve the highest possible placing in both the men’s and women’s team standings,” said Team Leader Charlotte Fisher. “The team is a mixture of some very experienced road runners and those who we believe have the potential to go on to enjoy successful careers.
“There is great competition among the team, as proven throughout the qualifying period and at the British Championships at the weekend. We enjoyed a great Championships two years ago in Cardiff and Valencia will act as a great test for all those selected.”
Kenyan duo Geoffrey Kamworor and Peres Jechirchir were the 2016 winners at the Cardiff hosted event, with Mo Farah taking bronze. Kenya also won the two team titles.
The African nation has already announced its team which is spearheaded by defending champion Kamworor and women’s half marathon world record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei.
The IAAF competition started in 1992 and took place every year until 2010 when it then became a biannual event.
The British Athletics qualifying standard had to be achieved between 1st January 2017 and 4th March 2018 and the times were as follows.
Men: 10,000m – 29:30,half marathon – 65:00, marathon – 2:16:00
Women: 10,000m – 33:10, half marathon – 75:00, marathon – 2:36:00
Elsewhere, the USA men’s team includes American cross-country champion Leonard Korir and two-time world champion Bernard Lagat, while the strong women’s team features Jordan Hasay and Sara Hall.