Welsh Schools are pleased to announce the make-up of the teams for this year’s Virgin Money Giving Mini London Marathon to be held on Sunday 23rd. April. This is the 15th successive year that teams from Welsh Schools have attended this prestigious event held over the last 3 miles of the London Marathon course. It provides an opportunity for young athletes from Wales to test themselves against the best in Great Britain & Northern Ireland, competing against the other Celtic nations, the powerful English regions and athletes representing each of the London boroughs.
The Under 13, 15 and 17 teams comprising of 6 athletes have been chosen from performances over a series of cross country events held over recent months. They now travel to Royal Holloway College on Saturday 22nd., and following an overnight stay continue into London early on Sunday morning with races taking place shortly after 9am. Television coverage is provided via the red button on BBC.
Performances over the winter cross country events have highlighted how competitive this year’s group should be. The Under 17s team has a lot of experience with Oliver Barbaresi and Dominic Smith both now at the top of the age group and likely to feature, they are joined by the equally experienced Elliot Lawrence and James Vincent makes a welcome return to the team. The late withdrawal of Abi Fisher will be a blow for the Under 17 Girls challenge, this will place additional pressure on Abbie Williams, Naomi Reid, Isobel Dodd, Carys Bill and Kiara Frizelle, Hannah Jenkins comes into this team and her previous appearance at the event will leave her well prepared. The theme of experience continues into the Under 15s where Osian Perrin has been a previous winner as an Under 13 and 4 other team members have performed well in the past. There is also good depth in the Under 15 girls with Eluned King, Mia Roberts and Mollie Jones all performing consistently well over the winter, add to this mix Orla Davies, the much improved Aimee Callow as well as Ashleigh Willis and this is another team which should be in contention.
There is a competitive look to both Under 13 teams although there is a lack of experience at the event, however Jacob Reynolds, Samia Jones and Daisy Thompson will all benefit from previous runs over the course, for the others the races provide an opportunity to gain experience and learn about both the event and the road racing discipline. The team event in each of the age groups is based on 4 athletes to score, we expect to be competitive in all age groups with the additional race within a race against the Scots and Northern Irish providing another benchmark of performance.
The team is supported by a Management Team of 4, Steve Jones (Afan Nedd Tawe/WSAA), Rhys Jones (Neath Harriers AC), Joan Goldsmith (Carmarthen & District Harriers) alongside Steve Livett (Menai AC). Thanks should also go to Med Richards (Dyfed) and Hedydd Davies (Dyfed) for their hard work in preparation for the event. The hard work now falls to the athletes themselves as we wish them all good luck for performances on the day.
WSAA Support Officer