ATHLETICS: Milestone triumph for Tromans

GLYN TROMANS is a good advertisement for cardiac surgery. Since undergoing two operations in 1996 to eradicate an extra valve in his heart, the Coventry Godiva runner has made what he describes as a "major breakthrough", and on Saturday he picked up his first British title to earn himself a place at next month's World Cross-Country Championships in Belfast.

The 29-year-old Tromans ran clear of almost 300 other athletes on an undulating course at Wollaton Park, Nottingham to win the Reebok Inter- Counties Championship which served as a trial for the world event in Northern Ireland on 27-28 March.

Behind him, Andrew Pearson and Dominic Bannister claimed the other two automatic qualifying places to form half of a team that will be completed with discretionary choices and announced today.

Britain's leading cross-country runners, Paula Radcliffe and Jon Brown, chose to miss the trials in order to prepare on the other side of the Atlantic. But Tromans, one of four new champions the trials produced, would not have missed the event for, well, the world.

"I felt really good out there today," he said. "I came here knowing I was going to win, even if some others didn't expect it." One of the main reasons for his confidence was the extra time he has had to devote himself to training, having given up his job last September as a lecturer in marketing at a further education college.

"It has made all the difference," he said. "It means I don't have to get up early every morning and fit sessions in around work." Lottery funding has enabled him to maintain his pursuit of a potential that was compromised for most of the Nineties by his heart condition.

"I had the problem since 1991, although I only had it diagnosed three weeks before the first operation," he said. "When I was out running, four or five times a week I would have to stop and recover from oxygen debt, because my heart rate would go from around 140 a minute to 220 or 230 within a couple of seconds.

"It could happen at any time. It didn't matter how hard I was running. The only thing I could do was to lie down where I was - on the track, or at the roadside - and wait for it to pass. It was more scary for my family a lot of the time, because I would be late coming back from runs while I waited for my heart rate to stabilise." Two minutes before his operation, it got scary for Tromans too as he was asked to sign a disclaimer form giving the surgeon the right to put in a pacemaker in the event of any problem. "They had to do a welding job to close the extra valve up and it was in the centre of the heart, so if they had burned too deep there might have been permanent damage," he said.

Less than a year after his second operation, he qualified for the World Cross-Country Championships with fourth place in the trials, and in last year's world event at Marrakesh he was the top British finisher, in 38th place.

Now he returns - as Warwickshire's first inter-counties champion since the 1970 Commonwealth 10,000m bronze medallist, Dick Taylor, who retains his links with Coventry Godiva and was present in the early spring sunshine to see Tromans - who trains with Taylor's son, Richard - earn his gold.

Tromans needs to be one of the top 10 European finishers in Belfast to maintain his current level of Lottery funding, but the pounds 2,000 he received as runner-up in the Reebok Cross-Country Challenge, and an extra pounds 1,000 as winner of the Puma Road Rankings, will have helped with the preparation costs.

In the women's 8km event, Angela Mudge produced a strong, front-running display which won her a first British title - that is, if you do not count hill running.

Mudge, a 27-year-old adopted Scot who is working on a PhD in chemistry at Edinburgh University, has twice been British hill-running champion, but her victory on Saturday, ahead of Tara Kryzwicki - daughter of the former West Bromwich Albion and Wales winger Dick Kryzwicki - and Lucy Wright surprised everyone, including herself.

Last month, after taking part in a cross-country race within the grounds of Stormont Castle, she was not included in a group of 35 likely British contenders who were shown around the world championship course in another part of Belfast. Instead, she went for a two-hour training run.

The inclusion of shorter races at the world championships offered opportunity to two other new champions, Helen Pattinson and Dave Heath, who won the 4km events to earn their Belfast trips.

News
peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
Arts and Entertainment
Highs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
News
news
New Articles
i100... with this review
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Cover Supervisor

£75 - £90 per day + negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Are you a cover supe...

Marketing Manager - Leicestershire - £35,000

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...

Marketing Executive (B2B and B2C) - Rugby, Warwickshire

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...

SEN Coordinator + Teacher (SENCO)

£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam