Australian 10,000m Record Holder Ben St Lawrence to Contest 5000m at IAAF World Champs 2011
Whilst Ben St Lawrence is not a triathlete he is well known to the Sydney triathlon crowd and while based in London training for the World Champs he did mention he had swum in a pool and also brought a bike. I could be drawing a long bow but that sounds like something someone might do if they were a triathlete. So with this in mind I thought I would have a quick chat with Ben to see how he is going in the lead up to the 5000m in Korea and who he is up against in the race.
10km is a distance well known to triathletes and someone who can run it in under 28 minutes is definitely of interest to the average triathlete.
This is Ben St Lawrence’s first major championship since the Commonwealth Games last year, where he placed 7th in both the 5000m and the 10,000m.
This IAAF World Championships are see by the athletes as being second only to the Olympics Games. This race will give St Lawrence a great insight into what to expect at the Olympic Games next year in London.
Ben had some great results earlier in the year with a 13:10 5000m in March and the Australian 10,000m record of 27:24 in May before suffering an injury. “Unfortunately I had to miss three weeks of training due to an Achilles injury which knocked me back a bit, but thankfully I have put in two months of good training since then and seem to be reaching good form.” Ben’s last race was a third place in a 5000m in Finland in 13:23.
As is often the case with athletes, Ben wishes he was in ‘perfect shape’ for this race, but are elite athletes ever in what they think is their perfect shape? “I am looking forward to getting out there and testing myself against the best in the world but as usual I still wonder if I am perfectly ready for this race.”
There are three Australians in the 5000m, with approx 40 entrants in total. The three Aussies are Ben, Craig Mottram and Collis Birmingham. These guys are the three fastest Australians ever at this distance.
“The competition just to make the final will be tough, with the best athletes from all over the world, including the dominant East Africans.”
The heats are on Sept 1st at 11:05am Sydney time. The final is on the 4th of September.
Who are the big names up against the three Australians?
Somalian born British athelete and 2011 world number one Mo Farah, Ethiopian World Record holder Keninese Bekele, Double Commonwealth Champion from Uganda – Moses Kipsiro, Kenyan Born American and Double World Champion Bernard Lagat as well as the entire Kenyan team are amongst the favourites. Add to that the top Europeans, Japanese, South Americans, Americans etc
Good luck Ben. We will hear back from Ben after the race.