Paul Lockwood shifts up a gear
Wakefields U17 county cross country champion Paul Lockwood has just returned from a month's training with world marathon record-holder Khalid Khannouchi.
The Wakefield Harriers' athlete often trains in Leeds and is coached by Khannouchi's wife Sandra, the Dominican Republic record holder.
"Sandra has been coaching me since October and in less than a month I took more than 30 seconds off my 3000m pb," said Paul.
"I went from 9:40 to 9:10. I think I was about ready to break nine minutes but the season came to an end."
He added: "I first got in touch with Khalid and Sandra through a friend, we exchanged e-mail addresses and Sandra gave me some general advice from time to time. Then she started coaching me and I've upped both my quantity and quality."
"I'm doing quicker stuff now, like 1000s and 400s, and it was a great experience training with Khalid, the first time we met was in February when he came over to London for a press conference. I met up with him and also got to meet Gert Thys."
Lockwood joined Khannouchi in Albuquerque in the US along with Yousri El Mejdoubi, a student from the University of Southern Mississippi, who has beaten Joseph Kimani the world 10k record holder on the roads.
Lockwood hopes to reduce his 3000m and 5000m times this coming track season. He is also targeting success in the English Schools.
Long-term - the talented Wakefield youngster would love to go into athletics fulltime.