Helen Godsell wins W65 200m in 29.98, while W55 Clare Elms clocks 10:13.70 for 3000m

Helen Godsell and Clare Elms set world records in the British Masters Indoor Championships at Lee Valley as UK athletes warmed up for the world championships in Poland later this month.

A record 630 athletes competed in 1327 individual events.

Godsell won her W65 200m in 29.98 to become the oldest ever woman to break 30 seconds indoors.

New to the age group, she also won the previous day’s 60m in an UK record 8.88 to beat Caroline Powell who also set a European W65 400m record of 71.31 on day one before chasing Godsell home at 200m.

Clare Elms has also made the most of hitting a new age group this winter and she had previously set world W55 records over 800m and 1500m (twice each), the mile and road 5km.

Here she contested the 3000m where her previous attempt in February fell short.

Winning the overall women’s race, her 10:13.40 took five seconds off Fiona Matheson’s world mark and gave her a clean sweep of all middle distance marks.

For most of the race she was able to follow overall 1500m winner Zoe Doyle through 1000m just outside schedule in 3:27.0 but at halfway in 5:09 and 2000m in 6:51.4 she was ahead of the necessary pace.

Elms pushed on herself in the last kilometre and covering that in 3:22, she was able to pull away from W40 winner Doyle and win by over five seconds as Doyle won W40 gold in 10:19.42.

It was not the only record in the race as though lapped by Elms seven times, Richard Pitcairn-Knowles set a UK M85 record of 18:55.69.

Having not been able to do any faster training during the week due to niggles picked up at the Surrey League cross-country, Elms was delighted to run so well but admitted she almost did not bother attacking the record when she saw it would be a mass race for all age groups.

Elms’ race was the last of the two-day meeting and the race before saw a similar record time.

In the combined M60 and M65 3000m, Nigel Gates (pictured below) set a UK M65 record of 10:16.62 in following M60 winner Andy Wetherill for most of the race.

Gates, one of Britain’s greatest ever vet athletes, already held the M40 (8:20.16), M45 (8:45.19) and M50 (8:49.37) British records.

Earlier, world W55 champion Virginia Mitchell was just over a second outside Elms’ 800m world record with a 2;26.89 clocking, while Kevin Archer just missed the UK M65 record with 2:25.71 in defeating new mile record-holder Dave Bedwell, who had beaten him easily at 1500m.

Dave Ragan impressed with a M35 800m win in 1:56.88.

Theresa Eades set a UK W60 triple jump mark of 8.77m, while Sue Frisby set a UK W55 60m hurdles mark of 9.55 and John Kirkham set a UK M90 record in the shot of 5.24m. Kirstin King set a W55 60m record of 8.35.

Ian Richards thought he had a M70 3000m walk world record of 15:15.86 when he finished but the judges gave him four red cards on the last lap and he was disqualified.

M40 800m European indoor champion Dean Richardson won a controlled but narrow M45 800m and 1500m double while M45 1500m world masters champion Mark Symes also won middle distance golds in style at the M50 age group.

Another world champion M55 Guy Bracken, easily won at 1500m and 3000m.

Multi W70 world champion Angela Copson gained an 84.00/3:01.59 400m/800m double while another favourite for Poland, Alison Bourgeois, won W65 800m gold in 2:53.35.

W50 world record-holder Irie Hill won the pole vault with a 3.40m leap.

Multi-talented Di Norman won gold medals at 60m hurdles, high and long jumps though was just beaten in the shot.

Pick of the younger age groups sprints was W45 Michelle Thomas who set an 8.22/27.10 double while W80 Evaun Williams was the pick of the heavy throws, which were held in windy conditions outside.

Chris Monk, who in 1973 won a World Student Games title and won the European Cup 200m, won the M65 60m in 8.29.

There will be a more detailed report in this week’s magazine together with photographs from Tom Phillips.

It was not the only BMAF Championships of the weekend as the cross-country event took place at the Stormont Estate in Northern Ireland.

The fields were affected by the clash with the indoor event and the UK Inter-Counties but saw exciting races.

Rebecca Luxton, who was only 24th in the early winter British Masters International, came through strongly to catch home athlete Amy Bulman who had built an early lead. Luxton ran 25:48.

W50 Shileen O’Kane (26;17), W55 Sue Cordingly (28:23) and M65 Stan Owen (26:05) were among the more impressive age group winners in that race.

Scotland’s M40 Jethro Lennox won the main men’s race in 29:33 from local M35 Steven McAlary and outstanding M55 winner ben Reynolds, who was timed at 29:45.

Eammon White won M50 gold in 29;47 and Alastair Walker won M60 gold in 31:41.

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