Stellar field of speedsters set to line up for Chichester Priory 10k

A high-quality field has been assembled for Sunday’s Chichester Priory 10k – and organisers say it could be the fastest in the history of the event.

Friday, 31st January 2020, 7:30 am
Charlie Hulson is a contender for Chichester glory / Picture: Getty

It is one of the major road races in the English calendar and a stellar field will be lining up for the 9.30am start outside the Goodwood motor circuit.

The success of previous years’ events, particularly last year’s, has ensured the 2020 renewal is extremely popular, with runners from across England, Scotland and Wales expected to compete.

The men’s event could be the fastest in the history of the race. The record on the Goodwood course is 29.32, set last year by Will Mycroft, but the previous city-based course had a record time of 29.02, recorded by Peter Riley in 2007.

Nick Goolab (left) is due to run in the Chichester race / Picture: Getty

The top two from last year, Mycroft (Enfield & Haringey AC) and Paul Navesey (Crawley AC), are returning.

However, they will need to be on top form to beat some of the other competitors – as on paper there are a number of athletes who have quicker personal bests.

The list of entrants includes many current and aspiring internationals.

Based on recent form Nick Goolab of Belgrave looks a potential winner, having the best UK 10k performance in 2019 after Sir Mo Farah.

Kieran Clements (Shaft-esbury Barnet) is another entrant capable of running under 29 minutes. Also expected to be in the leading group will be Owen Hind (Kent AC), Peter le Grice (Bristol & West), Christopher McLeod (Solihull and Small Heath), Jake Shelley (Shaftesbury Barnet), Charlie Hulson (Liverpool Harriers) and Andy Vernon and Ben Bradley (both Aldershot & Farnham).

Also returning is Scott Overall (Blackheath & Bromley), one of the race’s previous Olympians and like the others mentioned, capable of being home in under 30 minutes. Local interest will focus on Chichester Runners’ Harry Leleu to see how he fares in this level of competition.

The women’s race looks equally exciting but the reigning champion, Scottish international Steph Twell (Aldershot), is in America preparing for the Olympics.

Interest will focus on the trio from the City of Norwich AC, Dani Nimmock, Iona Lake and Sarah Astin, whose distinctive yellow and red striped vests will feature on the streets of Chichester for the first time since 2007.

Also up with the leaders could be Maisie Trafford of Arena 80, Leah Harris from Worthing, Chloe Cook from Bodyworks and Laura Brenton from Southampton.

The leading veteran could be Caroline Hoyte of Arena 80, a previous winner of the Chichester, who will have her son running for the first time.

This will be the fourth year the event has been based at the Goodwood motor circuit.

The route takes runners south along Claypit Lane, up Madgwick Lane, then east along Stane Street to Strettington, across to New Road and westwards back to the motor circuit. It finishes with a complete lap of the circuit. The event may have more than trebled in size of entries from the inaugural race but it remains a very varied race in terms of competitors. There will be those representing clubs, running for charity, looking for personal bests or turning out for the first time.

Many will use it as a pre-London or Brighton Marathon warm-up or a gauge of post-Christmas fitness. To aid those looking for a personal best, organisers are introducing pacemakers who will run at even pace.