EILIDH Bell was the leading West Country runner in the women’s race at the Vitality 10,000m road race in London.
The Team Bath AC smashed her personal best by almost a minute as she clocked a time of 35mins 48secs to finish 33rd, one place ahead of Bristol & West’s Natalie Griffiths.
Afterwards Bell revealed that she knew a fast time was possible when also setting a lifetime best at the Easy Runner Bitton 5k event earlier this month.
“I ran 17:09 in the Bitton event which was a PB (previously 17:21 recorded in the Pomphrey 5k in Bristol at the end of April) and I reckoned then I had a good chance of going under 36 minutes for the first time,” said Bell.
“I knew I was in good shape and I ran pretty even splits. I wouldn’t say it is the fastest 10k course I have ever run but the quality of the field and the great atmosphere really helps.”
The time lifts Bell to eighth in the South West Rankings and represents a huge improvement upon her previous best of 36:41 set in the Brecon Carreg Cardiff Bay 10k in March.
It is worth noting that a year ago in the same London race Bell finished 57th in a time of 37:50 so her progress is very impressive.
This year Bell has also ran PBs over 5k, as mentioned above, 10 miles (60:36 in the Chippenham Good Friday race) and the half marathon (79:00, Paddock Wood).