Athletics

Plymouth’s Tank smashes her 10,000m PB on her way to West Coast victory

CITY of Plymouth’s Poppy Tank smashed her 10,000m personal best to claim an impressive win at the West Coast Relays meeting in Clovis, California, on Friday.

Tank ran a quick 32:52.65 for the 25-lap race, to win by 22 seconds. She also knocked more than 24 seconds of Utah University’s all-time record.

Her run was also inside the UK top 10 target time and puts her in this year’s top five British athletes, alongside Eilish McColgan, Lily Partridge, Jennifer Nesbitt and Clara Evans. They are the only athletes to have gone under 33 minutes this year.

She is also in the top five for 5,000m, having run 15:45.07 at the start of April.

Both her 5,000m and 10,000m times are now edging her closer to a senior international track debut, having previously represented Great Britain in cross country at under-23 level.

Tank’s previous best for the 10,000m, set in 2019, was 34:08.80.

Utah’s head coach Kyle Kepler said after her run: “A really terrific, poised and confident effort by Poppy. There were several variables that changed leading up to this race and she dealt with all of them like a pro.”

Tank’s City of Plymouth team-mate Victoria Weir also impressed in America on Friday.

She took second place in the 1,500m at the OSU High Performance Meet in Corvallis, Oregon.

Running for Portland Pilots, Weir clocked 4:35.82, but was just edged out for the win by Oregon State’s Gabby Peterson.

Meanwhile closer to home, Erme Valley Harriers’ Alison Thorn had a good run at Turn & Burn 5k in Exeter on Thursday.

Thorn clocked 18:49 minutes to finish as fourth women overall and first female over-45.

Tavistock Run Project’s Claire Fraser, Hannah Smith and Emma Baker all broke the 20-minute barrier, while Tavistock AC’s Edward Horn clocked a new 5k PB over 16.44 minutes to finished 18th in a strong field won by Exmouth’s Tom Merson.

Full Turn & Burn 5k results can be found HERE.

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