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Friday, 14 June, 2002, 23:22 GMT 00:22 UK
Radcliffe grabs MBE
Paula Radcliffe won the London Marathon on her debut
Radcliffe won the London Marathon on her debut
Britain's Paula Radcliffe has been awarded an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours, for services to athletics.

Radcliffe is widely regarded as one of the greatest distance runners in the world after winning this year's London Marathon at her first attempt and smashing the UK and European records.

Her 2:18:56 was the second fastest ever run, over three minutes faster than the previous best in a women's only race and over four minutes better than the previous fastest debut marathon.

Between 1998 and 2001, the 29-year-old set four British records at both 5000m and 10,000m, two at 3000m and two at half marathon.

Front-runner

Many of her successes to date have come in cross-country, from her magnificent win over Wang Junxia to take the World Junior title in 1992 to her World gold and silver medals in 2001 and repeat win in 2002.

She won the European cross-country title on her comeback from illness in 1998, claimed the 5th Avenue (road) Mile in New York in 1996 and 1997 and finished third in the IAAF World Cross Challenge series in 1997.

After using front-running tactics in the 10,000m at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, she ended up a disappointed fourth in 30:26.97, although that was another British and Commonwealth record.

In 2001 Radcliffe realised her dream by winning the World Cross-country title at Ostend after a thrilling race against Gete Wami.

The Ethiopian came back to pip her the following day in the 4km race, but Radcliffe had won the one that mattered most by responding to Wami's challenge and outsprinting her to the line.

Find out more about the Birthday Honours 2002

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25 Apr 02 | Athletics
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