Piers Copeland’s fine track season (most recently at the European under-23 Champs) saw him invited to compete in the Emsley Carr Mile during the Muller Anniversary Games art the London Olympic Stadium on Sunday 21 July. The Emsley Carr Mile dates back to 1953 and is an invitation-only race. The Wikipedia entry for the event says, ‘The race has been won by eleven Olympic champions, Kip Keino, Steve Ovett, Murray Halberg, John Walker, Sebastian Coe, Säid Aoita, William Tanui, Vénuste Niyongabo, Haile Gebrselassie, Abel Kiprop and Hich El Guerrouj. It has also been won by seven athletes who have held the world record for the mile: Walker, Ovett, Coe, El Guerrouj, Filbert Bayi, Derek Ibbotson and Jim Ryun.’
This year’s race had plenty of top class names from across the world (Africa, Australasia and Europe), of the 16 athletes. This was Piers’ biggest stage yet. Amongst the thousands in the venue some of Wimborne AC’s young athletes were there with their ‘Go Piers’ signs ready to cheer him home. Races in May and June over 1500 in Rehlingen, Germany and Loughborough suggested that a sub-4 minute mile was within Piers’ grasp … and so it proved.
Despite being the new kid on the block, it was clear that Piers could live in this sort of company. He recorded 3:56:05, inside the magical four minutes by a margin. This performance sees him placed on the UK ‘All Time’ list for an under-23 over a mile … ahead even of Mo Farah! Naturally it’s a Wimborne AC club record too!Piers is having a season to remember.