Women's Running Roundup 3/12/18 - Valencia Marathon (Steph Twell) and California International Marathon

Amidst sad news of Callum Hawkins pulling out of Fukuoka Marathon and Robbie Britton doing well in Spain, this week it was all about dominant marathon debuts for two young ladies…


26 year old Emma Bates (instagram.com/emmajanelbates) ran her marathon debut to win California International Marathon in 2:28:18 making her the USATF (USA Track&Field) marathon champion for 2018. She doesn’t have a formal sponsorship deal (though she has previously partnered with a beer company who were also raising money for Camp Fire Relief). You’d think that sounds like a fairytale but it turns out (read this article) that Emma was on the verge of quitting running a year ago. For those of us who run as a hobby, the idea of being part of a formal running squad in Boston sounds like the dream but as with many things, the grass isn’t always greener. Emma talks about how she found that atmosphere and city life too much and had lost the love of running. When you’re so young in your career it must seem foolhardy from an outsider point of view to ditch that kind of setup but this weekend has proved just how right Emma’s move to the countryside for a slower pace of life has been. It turns out that making sure you love the sport is just as important as a high level training setup. Worth remembering for all of us, I think.

Steph Bruce had a quick turn around from her 11th place performance of 2:30:59 at TCS New York Marathon just last month though it clearly wasn’t an issue as she ran a 14s PB. Again, it shows that sometimes it’s about the passion and fire in your belly as much as it is about the training schedule. That said, I’m not sure everyone should do that (says the woman who’d run a marathon every week given half the chance!)

  1. Emma Bates, 2:28:19

  2. Steph Bruce, 2:29:21

  3. Samantha Roe Lee 2:30:25

  4. Michele Lee, 2:30:32

  5. Bridget Lyons 2:31:00

Also worth noting, Maegan Krifchin who finished 8th recently won the RnR San Jose Half Marathon in 01:12:48 at the start of October (previous PB 1:14:30). Her CiM finish time of 2:32:47 was a good chunk off her Kobe Marathon winning CR & PB of 2:33:14 from Nov 2017 so it looks like she’s one to keep an eye on for the future and could be worth a look at the Olympic trials in the future.

Another WRR favourite, Teal Burrell (www.milestothetrials.com) came 26th in a PB of 2:39:10. She says that it wasn’t quite the result she hoped for but a PB is a PB and she’s off the the Olympic trials again. Teal is the inspiration for my own personal challenge to hit the USA OTQ time of 2:45. It’s a big aim but she managed it so hey, let’s give it a go.

Finally on the CiM subject, the ever-excellent Canadian Running website has a great, short article which gets right to the point about how awesome women’s marathoning is at the moment. 99 women ran under 2:45 at CiM, whereas only 20 ran that at the last American Olympic Trials. Check it out here.


From this Brit’s point of view, the main news from Valencia is that New Balance athlete Steph Twell (29) smashed her marathon debut, coming 7th in 2:30:14 and running the second fastest time by a UK female athlete this year. Not only that but she did it in a confident manner, negative splitting - 75:32 for the first half and 74:40. She’s now aiming to qualify for the 2020 Olympics team. The weirdo says on her INstagram that she preferred the second half… odd lady;) She also credits the help of the running community, which is great to see. Here’s top even more from Steph in the years to come.

Jenny Spink was second Brit in 2:36:54. At the top though it was Ethiopia who dominated the podium (and the men’s too).

  1. Bekere Dido,ETH, 2:21:14

  2. Lydia Cheromei, ETH 2:22:09

  3. Gidey Tinbut WELDFEGEBRIEL, ETH 2:23:37

You can see more at Fast Running, BBC SPort and Athletics Weekly



9th Dec

Saitama International Marathon

Guangzhou Marathon

Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon

Malaga Marathon

Barbados Marathon

16th Dec

Shenzhen Marathon

Bangsaen21 Half Marathon

Mersin Marathon

Tata Steel Kolkata 25K

Pisa Marathon

30/31st Dec

Corrida Internationale de Houilles

Nationale-Nederlanden San Silvestre Vallecana

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