Athletics: Gemma Steel ready for world challenge
Gemma Steel is feeling positive ahead of IAAF World Half-Marathon Championships.
The Charnwood athlete will be part the Great Britain trio, alongside Susan Partridge and Caryl Jones, that will toe the line at the championships in Kavarna, Bulgaria, tomorrow.
Steel made the team following a superb performance in the Great North Run three weeks ago, where she finished seventh in 1hr 10min 46sec – the second-quickest time over the 13.1mile distance by a British athlete this year.
This will be the first time that the 27-year-old has competed at world level over this distance.
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"I am feeling quite positive really," she said. "I've been training hard, I have put the miles in and I'm feeling as fit as I can be.
"I do not really know what to expect as it's the first time I've ran this distance for my country but I'd like to get into the top 10 or 15."
Despite not running this distance for Great Britain before, Steel is no stranger to competing for her country.
She has run cross-country internationally on a number of occasions, including the World Championships in 2010, and also led the GB team to the gold medal in last year's European Championships in Velenje, Slovenia, with Steel picking up the individual bronze medal.
"It's always an honour to represent your country," said Steel.
"And I'm not doing badly in notching up a few GB vests."
Ivanhoe Runners Alistair Chambers reached a massive milestone when completed his 50th full marathon, He finished the Berlin Marathon in the excellent time of 3.09.52.
This is a magnificent achievement for Chambers, who takes part in several marathons a year, and all in impressive times.
Also running in Berlin and finishing just ahead of Chambers was club mate Ivor Davies, who clocked 3.09.16.
Richard Martin rounded off a great team effort for Ivanhoe with a time of 3.19.07, which was a massive personal best by 14 minutes.