Stockport and the Trafford College Group’s Head of Studies for Catering & Hospitality, Matthew Shaw, has been named in the top ten fastest runners in the UK for his age group, following yesterday’s London Marathon.
Matt has been running for over 25 years and has represented England at both junior and senior levels. He has also officially paced 10 marathons, with this year marking his second attempt at the London Marathon. His aim was to run just under 3 hours at an even pace and to support other runners achieve this target.
After suffering in the heat last year, Matt wanted to do himself justice and achieve his target time. He finished in 2.59.52 with a perfectly paced even split race, placing him in the UK’s top ten.
Part of Matt’s role as pacer is to be a brand ambassador for both New Balance ( the main race sponsor) and Runner’s World Magazine, where he shares good practice and offers advice and tips to all runners. His aim now is to build on the success of this year’s marathon at the SimplyHealth Great Birmingham 10k on Sunday 6th May, where he will get the opportunity to represent England in his new age category of V40 (Vet 40). Matt is delighted to have been selected to represent England versus a Celtic Composite Team.
“This aspirational achievement of representing England through all the age categories is something extremely challenging and to finally accomplish it brings me great pride and satisfaction.”
The initiative is part of a wider programme of work launched in 2017 by England Athletics which aims to recognise and reward the achievements of age group runners. At Birmingham, the Great Run Company will provide age group runners who have achieved selection with the specially designed England Masters vest, and they will be allocated a front of race starting pen just behind the elite starters.
Athletes are selected from three qualifying races over the previous autumn and New Year, one in the North, Midlands and South of England. Interested runners are urged to get their entries in quickly as all three host partner qualifying events are very popular with entries often closing early and at capacity. The top three eligible men and top three eligible women in each age category are then selected to represent England.