Marathon athletes picked for Rio 2016

Callum Hawkins celebrates his PB at the London Marathon 2016. Photo credit: London Marathon Events

The first members of the athletics squad representing Team GB in the marathon event at the Rio Olympics have been named.

Derek Hawkins will be running the men's marathon in Rio, UK Athletics announced this week. Hawkins will be included alongside his younger brother Callum and Tsegai Tewelde, both of whom automatically qualified at the London Marathon on Sunday.

Derek Hawkins was the third Briton to cross the line in London, while the British favourite Scott Overall failed to finish due to health concerns. Overall set a faster time in Berlin last year but Hawkins has been chosen as the wildcard.

Alyson Dixon and Sonia Samuels, who finished 13th and 14th respectively, also guaranteed their marathon spots in Sunday's race in London.

Callum Hawkins and Tewelde, who claimed asylum in Britain after competing for Eritrea at the 2008 World Cross Country Championships in Edinburgh, qualified as the first two Britons to cross the line in Sunday's marathon.

Hawkins came in at 2:10:52 to finish eighth overall and first British male, running a PB in the process, while Tewelde came 12th in 2:12:57 - both within the 2:14:00 qualifying time.

The older Hawkins brother Derek has been awarded a discretionary place after clocking 2:12:57 to finish 14th.

Mark England, Team GB’s chef de mission for the Games, said: ‘I’m delighted to be able to welcome the first group of the athletics squad for Rio 2016 into Team GB. The marathon runners selected all showed an incredible spirit at this year’s London Marathon and thoroughly deserve their chance to race in Rio de Janeiro.’