European champion returns to road running at Kew Gardens 10km
Jo Pavey will be hoping to transfer her success this year from the track to the roads when she runs the Kew Gardens 10km at the Richmond Running Festival on Sunday.
The four-time Olympian won her first major title with European 10,000m gold in Zurich in August just over a week after she bagged Commonwealth bronze over 5000m in Glasgow.
Fresh from finishing third over 5000m at the IAAF Continental Cup in Marrakech where she was European team co-captain, Pavey will step back up in distance to race against the likes of Beth Potter – fifth in the Commonwealth Games 10,000m – over 10km the day after celebrating her 41st birthday.
Unlike Pavey, Potter has not raced since the European Championships where she placed 14th over 10,000m, so her fresh legs could help her to spring a surprise, while in the men’s race Chris Thompson will be looking to successfully defend his crown.
Other international distance runners, including Ross Murray and Charlotte Purdue, will be on hand to support the Nike Kid’s Mile later on in the afternoon, while the Richmond Running Festival also includes the Visit Richmond Half Marathon.
The children’s mile races invite school children between the ages of 4 and 15 to take part free of charge, with every child receiving a medal, a Nike t-shirt and an Olympian’s autograph.
Six-time Paralympic gold medallist David Weir and Australia’s Commonwealth marathon champion Michael Shelley will officially start the event’s festivities. Mo Farah launched the Richmond Running Festival in Kew Gardens last year and in 2014 a new junior wheelchair race forms part of the Richmond’s ‘London 2012 Olympic legacy programme’ supported by Weir and his coach Jenny Archer’s charity, the Weir Archer Academy.
Young wheelchair athletes between the ages of 11 and 17 will have the chance to compete before the 10km and half-marathon events get under way.