Jo Pavey was delighted with her victory in the BUPA Great South Run but later claimed she was just as pleased her performance did not see her finish receiving medical treatment.
Pavey admitted the main reason she decided to compete over 10 miles in Portsmouth yesterday was to regain self-confidence after collapsing at the finish of the event’s sister race, the Great North Run.
In the Tyneside half marathon three weeks ago, the Commonwealth 5000 metres silver medallist felt dizzy and disorientated in the last 800m of the race, where she finished fourth.
She said: “I was a little bit concerned before the race about whether there might be a re-occurrence of what happened in the Great North but, thankfully, this time I didn’t have to spend an hour in the medical tent.”
The 33-year-old Exeter Harrier discovered the problem was a high blood sugar disorder and has considerably altered her diet to cope with long-distance running.
She certainly felt no effects when storming to the fifth fastest ever time by a UK woman of 52 minutes 46 seconds yesterday to win by more than a minute from Olivera Jevtic and Catherine Mutwa.
The victory and showing in the GNR confirmed Pavey – despite continuing her track career and targeting next summer’s World Championships 10,000m – can transform herself into an equally successful road runner.
Pavey intended attacking Jill Hunter’s 16-year-old UK record of 51min 41sec but strong winds and constant rain proved to great an obstacle.
“I was aware of what mile splits I wanted to do, so I was disappointed not to run a quicker time,” Pavey said.
“So I just concentrated on keeping relaxed and judging my pace. I wanted to run quicker but, the weather was so tough, it was exhausting me.
“To be honest, the weather was too tough. But, apart from that, I really enjoyed it. There was a great atmosphere and it’s a lovely course.”
Jon Brown was an impressive third in the men’s race after just losing out in a sprint finish behind Simon Arusei of Kenya and Chema Martinez.
Arusei, who led from the very first mile, headed off the challenge of Martinez by a second in a time of 47min 16sec, with Brown the same margin behind the Spanish runner-up.
However, the Canada-based star’s showing has bolstered his confidence, particularly after a lengthy injury spell, in his bid to win the Fukuoka Marathon on December 3.
Around five metres behind Arusei but clear of Martinez for most of the race, Brown said: “If the Spaniard had caught me earlier than he did, I think together we could have caught Arusei.
“The first two miles were very tough and the wind at the seven-and-a-half mile point to the finish caused problems.
“But the race shows things are going in the right direction and I’m improving every week.”