From the BMC Facebook page.
Long time BMC News Editor David Cocksedge writes today (in an email to Lets Run):
I was intrigued by the post on LRC Forum re. Nick Symmonds planning to run a half marathon this spring as part of his preparation in moving up to 1500m/mile seriously. Nothing odd about that in my view. Please note that on 20 August 1977, Steve Ovett won a half marathon race in Dartford, England, clocking 65:38. He only decided to run the race at the last minute, and had to borrow a pair of racing shoes from his training partner (and later coach) Matt Paterson.
On 3 September that year, Ovett won the inaugural World Cup 1500m title at Dusseldorf, Germany, in the UK record time of 3:34.45. Most impressive, however, was the way he blew the race apart on the last lap, clocking 25.1 for his final 200m, in spite of slowing down and waving to his parents approaching the final metres. John Walker, the reigning Olympic 1500m champion at the time, was so stunned that he ran off the track. You can watch the race on YouTube when you have a spare 5 minutes.
Ovett went on to dominate the world 1500m/mile scene for the next two years.
My point? That half marathon race two weeks before the World Cup was simply part of his preparation.
David Cocksedge, London, England