Pavey backs Rio Olympic trials move to Highgate

THE Highgate Harriers Night of the 10,000m PBs will take place next year on Saturday 21st May and will once again incorporate the British and England 10,000m Championships. For the first time, the event will also act as the British Athletics 10,000m trial race for the Olympic Games.

The first British athlete past the post in both the men’s and women’s races will guarantee selection for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, provided they have secured a valid qualifying mark (28:00.00 for men and 32:15.00 for women).

The event will take place at Parliament Hill Athletics Track on the evening of Saturday 21st May and will be free for spectators, it will again feature several high quality open races and unique entertainment.

British Athletics Performance Director Neil Black said: “We’re delighted that the Highgate Harriers Night of the 10,000m PBs will act as the 10,000m trial race for the Olympic Games. This event has established itself as the best 10,000m race in the country and is the perfect place for British athletes to test themselves over the distance. It is also a great opportunity for the public to see world class athletes up close for free and be part of a unique atmosphere.”

Race Organiser Ben Pochee said: “To host the Rio Olympic trials at our 10,000m event is testament to the grass roots lane 3 inspirational PB atmosphere and we now have the elite platform and collective passion to create Europe’s leading 25 lap racing festival on May 21st. Indeed the opportunity exists for each of us to tell people in years to come that ‘I was there’ watching the 2016 Olympic dream unfold from lane 3 absolutely free – so please save the date and spread the word!”

The Night of the 10,000m PBs will again be supported by London Marathon Events Ltd. Event Director Hugh Brasher said: “London Marathon Events is delighted to be supporting for the second year this excellent initiative by Highgate Harriers and Ben Pochee. One of our founding goals 35 years ago was to improve the standards of British distance running and it is exactly this sort of event that inspires athletes to better performances and personal bests.”

European 10,000m champion Jo Pavey (coach: Gavin Pavey) won the British 10,000m title at Highgate in 2014 and is anticipating a thrilling Olympic trial race next year.

She said: “It’s great that the Olympic trial will be at Highgate next summer. I loved running there in 2014 with the amazing atmosphere and crowd and I’d certainly recommend it for any distance runner.”