Athletics News

Andy Baddeley on elite racing ‘comeback’ aged 41

Andy Baddeley on elite racing 'comeback' aged 41

The 3:49 miler ran in the 1km time trial at the Podium Festival

Andy Baddeley is excited to be back in action once again.

It’s been eight years since Baddeley – who won the Dream Mile in Oslo with his personal best of 3;49.38 back in 2008 – last raced on the track.

Baddeley’s last race, just before Christmas, was the Valencia Marathon where he clocked 2:53.49 on his debut over 26.2 miles.

Safe to say, a time trial over 1km was slightly different.

The 41-year-old, who ran 2:16.99 over the distance back in 2007 and is still joint-eighth on the UK all-time list – ran an impressive 2:39.45, partnering with Mizuno, at the Podium Festival in Leicester (March 16).

After the race, AW caught up with Baddeley on his 1km time trial, the current crop of British milers and why rivalries in sport are so important.

Full Q&A below:

Andy Baddeley wins Oslo Dream Mile in 2008 (Getty)

How does it feel to be back racing once again?

Yeah, being back in this racing environment amongst I supposed the elite level of athletics, is great. It’s the first time I’ve raced like this since 2016 and that’s bonkers. I got the phone call from Graham [Johnson] at Mizuno, asking if I could come and race in the 5km.

However, there was a roster of 5km runners that were so much faster than my current level of fitness that he asked me if I’d do the 1km time trial. The last race I did before Christmas was a marathon so doing the 1km was absolutely bonkers!

What was the atmosphere like racing on this circuit? 

I’ve missed this [kind of atmosphere]. It’s almost visceral and you can hear the coaches, family and training groups all shouting for each other, leaning over the barriers. It’s also a really small circuit here as well and it’s built and built!

I’d have loved to have faced in something like this in Leicester. The innovation from the Podium 5k series is doing a lot for the top end of athletics. I see these events, Friday Night Under the Lights 5km and also Night of the 10,000m PBs and they are getting more people interested. You can hear the music and cheering and there was nothing like this when I was running. It’s such a massive difference.

Andy Baddeley leads Mo Farah (Mark Shearman)

When you think about what you did in your career and the success of British miling is now, how do you reflect on that?

The strength in British middle distance running right now is crazy. I was in a generation where we were striving to be the…

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