An Athlete who needs no introduction! Our 2021 10 Mile Race winner, Cole Gibbens.
If you haven’t heard of Cole, then where have you been? The Invicta East Kent AC Athlete has been taking the Kent running scene by storm in recent years and holds two podium finishes at our Halloween 10 Mile event. His first being at our 2019 race where he finished in an impressive 61:27 earning him 2nd place behind Alan Wood of Dover.
2019 Event in Pictures HERE.
Cole obviously made the most of a bad situation during the pandemic as he returned to our 2021 Event with the taste of glory.
The field was stacked in comparison as his previous result would have only been good enough for 7th this time. Along with incredibly challenging conditions, Cole was not put off by the competition.
He surged home in 54:40 to achieve a new Personal Best and beating Ashford & Districts own Nick Collins who clocked 56:03 for 2nd place.
A&D’s Chris Boyce had the opportunity to catch up with Cole to talk about his recent success. Here is what they had to say…
Chris: Hi Cole, it’s a pleasure to speak today and I’d just like to extend the welcome from everyone at A&D RRC. You’re obviously a supporter of our October event and have had lots of nice things to say in the past through social media. What do you feel is the appeal of our race and keeps you coming back to toe the start line?
Cole: Hi mate, thank you for having me. For me it’s the route. I love the combination of country roads and some mild trail through a woodland section. A very fun, challenging course but still a course where you could set a PB.
“Yes, my whole family run. My Dad, Sister and Mum…”
Chris: A love for the sport obviously runs in the family with your Dad also competing in last years event placing 10th overall. Your sister Grace had some success earlier this year at our 10k race in Feb placing 3rd Female. It must be great to have such strong roots running through the family?
Cole: Yes my whole family run. My dad, sister and mum almost always take part in events together. It’s been great watching my dad and sisters rivalry as they’re very closely matched and I know it won’t be long before the student becomes the master and she beats him!
Pictured: Andrew Gibbens – Ashford & District 10 Miles 2021
“I’m still not sure of my speciality…”
Chris: You are a bit of an all rounder and perform well both on and off the track. What event would you say is your specialty?
Cole: I try my best haha. The track work is all geared around improving my speed on the road. I’d say I’m still not sure of my specialty but the time I’m most proud of is my half marathon. Or maybe my 5k I can’t decide haha.
Friday Night Under Lights Meets Poduim 5k: 00:14:40
Stafford Half Marathon: 01:08:57
“That was the best atmosphere and experience of my life.”
Chris: We’ve seen you appear at some high profile events this year such as the Night of the 10k PB’s and the MK5000 PB special. These style of events are said to be pivotal in getting spectators closer to athletes and injecting a new generation of fans into the sport. What was your experience as an Athlete and how important to you think this style of event is to the future of athletics?
Cole: Oh this style of event is an absolute necessity if we want to improve the publicity and interest in running as a whole. It bridges the gap between serious running/racing but also a fun environment for spectators who maybe aren’t hardcore track and field fans so wouldn’t normally go an watch a normal track meet which lets admit.. have become very archaic. We need more events like these, especially the Night of the 10k PB’s at Highgate. That was the best atmosphere and experience of my life.
Pictured: Cole Gibbens – Night of the 10,000m PB’s
Chris: Can we expect to see you taking on the Marathon distance? Is the marathon something that interests you?
Cole: 100%. I’m not sure when. It frustrates me a little because people always expect you to take on the marathon as a half decent runner. But I want to add longevity to my running and this means staying clear of the marathon until I’m a bit older. But one day I will 100% tackle the marathon.
Chris: So, what is next for Cole Gibbens? Will you be defending your A&D 10 Mile Title on October 30th?
Cole: Unfortunately not I’ll be in between peak races at that point. Up next for me is the Great North Run after track season.
Chris: Cole, it’s been fantastic to chat with you! We will be keeping an eye on how you get on for the rest of the year. Best of luck at the Great North Run and we hope to see you back at one of our events soon.