23 AUG 2013 General News Prague, Czech Republic

Prague announces a stellar women's 10km field for the first time

Gemma Steel wins the 2012 SPAR Great Ireland Run 10km (organisers)Gemma Steel wins the 2012 SPAR Great Ireland Run 10km (organisers) © Copyright

For the first time in its 19-year-history, the Prague Grand Prix over 10km, an IAAF Silver Label Road Race, will feature an elite women's race competing alongside the always-strong men's field on 7 September.

The race has featured many of the great names of men's distance running in the last two decades, including Paul Tergat, Haile Gebrselassie and Stefano Baldini. 

From this year, women will be able to add their names to the list of winners.

With the introduction of equal prize money for both sexes, the elite athlete coordinator Jana Moberly has been able to put together a competitive group of international women.

Great Britain's Gemma Steel finished third in the 2013 Oakley New York Mini 10K in June and two had two other good second-place finishes in high-profile US races earlier this month and should be a contender for the podium in Prague.

Steel's compatriot, Susan Partridge will be coming to the Czech capital after a very credible 10th-place finish in the recent IAAF World Championships Marathon. 

Starting conservatively in the mid-afternoon heat of Moscow, Partridge worked her way up from 43rd place at 5km to make the top 10. 

Croatia's US-born Lisa Stublic opted to pass on the World Championships in order to concentrate on her training for the ING New York City Marathon in November and she will be looking to tune up for that race in Prague. 

Poland will be represented by Karolina Jarzynska, 15th in the 10,000m in Moscow, and Dominika Nowakowska, who finished 14th in the 5000m final in the Russian capital. 

One of the biggest surprises in Moscow was the seventh-place finish of the young Czech teenage talent Anezka Drahotova in the 20km Race Walk. However, the 18-year-old Drahotova, who won the European Athletics Junior Championships 10,000m Race Walk, is also a talented runner and made the final of the 3000m Steeplechase in Rieti.

The top African women in the field include Ethiopia's Afera Godfay, the fastest in the field at 31:08, and Kenya's Esther Chemtai and Lucy Njeri Macharia.

The men's race could be a duel between Kenya’s Daniel Chebii and Ethiopia’s Mosinet Geremew. Both of them coincidently have the same 10km best of 27:36 on the roads. 

Chebii was the winner in the Ceske Budejovice Half Marathon last year in the world-class time of 59:49.

They could be challenged by the 20-year-old Kenyan Kiprop Limo, the winner of the Stramilano Half Marathon this year, who has a 10km road best of 27:40.

Organisers for the IAAF