Lily Partridge back on streets of London for Vitality London 10000

Lily Partridge – the first British woman to finish this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon – will return to the capital for the Vitality London 10000 on Monday 28 May.

The 27-year-old finished in a superb eighth place overall in last month’s London Marathon, setting a new personal best time of 2 hours 29 minutes and 44 seconds. The run also guaranteed her selection into the Great Britain marathon squad for the European Championships in August.

Partridge, who has a 10k personal best (PB) of 33:27, will begin her build up to her second marathon of the year at the Vitality London 10000 where she will face an intriguing battle with her Aldershot & Farnham District AC team-mate Steph Twell.

Twell, whose PB of 32:28 makes her the fastest runner in the field, is coming off the back of a busy schedule at the Commonwealth Games where she competed in both the 1500m and 5000m, finishing seventh in the former and 14th in the latter.

Partridge, who won the 2016 Vitality London 10000, said: “The Vitality London 10000 is a great because it does bring together a range of athletes. Some people like Steph come into it in track shape and it can be fast and then there are us girls who come into it off the back of a marathon and we have to ease ourselves into it a bit more.

“I’m looking forward to it. It’s a great event and it’s nice to support the London Marathon again because they do a lot for us.”

Twell is not the only Commonwealth Games athlete racing at this year’s Vitality London 10000.

Sonia Samuels (PB 33:18) and Caryl Jones (PB 32:28) both ran the marathon on the Gold Coast and the pair have also been selected - along with Partridge, Charlotte Purdue, Alyson Dixon and Tracy Barlow – to run in the European Championships marathon in Berlin.

Partridge is looking forward to her second marathon of 2018 and the Vitality London 10000 will be the start of a gradual build-up to the European Championships.

She said: “The Vitality London 10000 is a good chance for me to blow the cobwebs away. Normally I start a 12-week build-up to a marathon but I’ve already been through a marathon cycle this year so I will stick to 10km and half marathons before going to Font Romeu to do some longer sessions before Berlin.”

The British team heading to Berlin is a good mix of youth and experience and Partridge believes women’s endurance running is in good health.

“We have a good covering over most events,” she said. “From Laura Muir, Elish McColgan and Laura Weightman on the track to us road girls. I think we are in a healthy condition if we can all just maintain consistency.”

Partridge believes that the British women are in a position to emulate their counterparts in the USA who are starting to make a real impact on the world stage. Desiree Linden won last month’s Boston Marathon and Shalane Flanagan is the New York City Marathon champion, while on the track, Emma Coburn is the world 3000m steeplechase champion.

“I don’t think the USA is any different to us,” said Partridge. “They probably have had more support over there but that will come. We get fantastic support from London Marathon Events and, in time, I think we will be able to compete with them. Success breeds success.”