News & Media

Elite Wheelchair and Para Athletes Fields

Elite Men's Wheelchair Field

DAVID WEIR (GBR)
David Weir
Born: 5/6/1979
Half Marathon PB: 41:19 (Great North Run, GBR, 2018)
The Vitality Big Half record: 2nd 2018 (52:17)
David Weir is the most successful Paralympic athlete in British history. He has won a record-breaking eight London Marathon titles and six Paralympic gold medals. Despite being 39 years old, he shows no signs of slowing down and this year will compete in his 20th consecutive London Marathon looking to make it three wins in a row. He was second at The Vitality Big Half 2018.
SIMON LAWSON (GBR)
Simon Lawson
Born: 7/6/1982
Half Marathon PB: 43:06 (Great North Run, GBR, 2014)
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Simon Lawson is one of Britain’s top Paralympic athletes. His 2017 marathon time of 1:25:06 at Boston makes him the fastest Brit ever over 26.2 miles and he was 14th in the Rio Paralympics marathon.
RAFAEL BOTELLO JIMENEZ (ESP)
Rafael Botello-Jimenez
Born: 23/2/1979
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Rafael Botello Jimenez holds Spanish records for the mile and 10,000m on the track and at 5km, 10km and marathon on the road. He is the third fastest European ever on a ‘legal’ course behind Heinz Frei and Marcel Hug and is a two-time Paralympian.
PATRICK MONAHAN (IRL)
Patrick Monahan
Born: 14/1/1986
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Patrick Monahan is the Irish record holder for the marathon and has won both the Dublin marathon and Columbus Ohio marathon. He was 16 in the marathon at the 2016 Paralympics.
JOHN BOY SMITH (GBR)
John Boy Smith
Born: 27/11/1989
Half Marathon PB: 43:34 (Great North Run, GBR, 2018)
The Vitality Big Half record: 3rd 2018 (52:19)
John Boy Smith is a training partner of David Weir who has made big strides in recent year. The biggest result of his career to date was winning a silver medal in the marathon at last year’s Commonwealth Games which came six months after he was runner-up in the 2017 New York City Marathon. He was the runner-up at last year’s Great North Run and third at The Vitality Big Half last year.

Elite Women's Wheelchair Field

MEL NICHOLLS (GBR)
Mel Nicholls
Born: 17/7/1977
Half Marathon PB: 53:39 (Great North Run, GBR, 2014)
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Mel Nicholls is a versatile wheelchair racer who has competed over a range of distances from 100m up to the marathon. She represented Great Britain at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics finishing fifth in the 800m in Rio.
MARGRIET VAN DEN BROEK (NED)
Margriet van den Broek
Born: 30/3/1974
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Margriet van den Broek holds Dutch national records from 100m up to 5000m and represented her county at the 2016 Rio Paralympics.
NIKKI EMERSON (GBR)
Nikki Emerson
Born: 4/6/1988
Half Marathon PB: 60:03 (Lisbon, POR, 2018)
The Vitality Big Half record: 3rd 2018 (67:08)
Nikki Emerson has raced over distances ranging from 100m up to the marathon and represented Great Britain the London 2012 Paralympics. She also was part of the England team that competed at the Commonwealth Games in Australia last year when she was sixth in the 1500m.
EDEN RAINBOW-COOPER (GBR)
Eden Rainbow-Cooper
Born: 17/5/2001
Half Marathon PB: 63:37 (Manchester, GBR, 2018)
The Vitality Big Half record: First appearance
Eden Rainbow-Cooper is one of the new generation of British wheelchair racers rising up through the ranks. She attends David Weir’s Weir Archer Academy in Kingston and last year won the Manchester Half Marathon in 63:37 in what was her first race over the half marathon distance.