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Oh so close… to a British record!

What’s it like to run close to a British record? Can you only dream of getting close in this summer’s Run Like a Legend mile race? M80 record holder Edmond Simpson shared a blog he wrote last year when he attended our Durham City Run Festival launch. 

“I have written before about British Masters Indoor Championships.  To re-cap, I won my first  British Masters gold medal 15 years ago at the Kelvin Hall Glasgow, noted for its really steep bends.  After that the event was at Cardiff each year until the new facility was built at Lee Valley, NE London. The great thing is that, unlike outdoors in early March, it is warm and wind-free. You can run in shorts and a vest and enjoy a jolly good sweat!

The two races of interest to me are 1500m and 3000m. They are on separate days of the weekend and these days it is a bit of a trek going for one let alone two. I entered both to keep my options open, but in the end I just did the 1500.

Rodney Mills is a guy from Ripon who holds the British M80 records for 400m and 800m, both obtained at the World Masters Champs in Perth, October 2016.

He had previously said he would like to run against me over 1500.

However this time he had already run the 400 and felt there was nothing left in his legs.

So my hope for company in my age group fell apart.

The others in my race were all substantially younger and faster than me so it was rather a lonely affair. I was hoping for 7.15 or better, so was delighted be under 7 mins with 6.55.40.

It was only later that I was told I was within a second of the M80 Indoor British record. In fact even three quarters of a second better would have secured it. OH,  SO……CLOSE.

Interesting that, looking back, I was there 7 years ago when the record was set. Some of you may know Bill Davies of Winchester. Before the race started he was saying “The record is about 7.20, I am sure I can beat that”.  Unfortunately, I had not realised afterwards that he had done just that.

What is in prospect?  The outdoor track 1500m has a tough M80 record. The track mile is probably do-able, but there are not many opportunities to run it. Perhaps Jarrow (Steve Cram’s home track) in July.  We wait to see how the year unfolds.”


Edmond Simpson (written March 2018)

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