A Summer on Track with Hayley Carruthers
In April 2019 just three years after taking up running, Hayley Carruthers competed in the elite field of the London Marathon, achieving a PB of 2:33:59.
Hayley’s finish line collapse made headlines around the world and landed her on the red sofa at BBC Breakfast but a single photograph, no matter how powerful, can only tell part of her story.
Following London Marathon I joined Hayley and her coach Dan Robinson to document her first full season on the track between the spring and autumn attempts at the marathon. This documentary follows Hayley from training sessions at the University of Birmingham, to local races in Birmingham and the Black Country, to the 5000m race at the British Championships in August where she achieved a top ten finish on the hottest day of the year. I wanted to show who Hayley is beyond the headlines and just what it takes to train and compete as an elite athlete.
Throughout filming Hayley was candid about her struggles with performance anxiety and impostor syndrome, experiences which runners of all ability levels can relate to. This documentary charts Hayley’s highs and lows through her first season on track. The reality of elite level athletics, as with club running, is not all sunshine, rainbows and Instagram highlights. This documentary shows what it looks and feels like behind the scenes.
After putting down a season of firsts on the track, in December 2019 Hayley ran Valencia Marathon in 2:32:42 and in April 2020 she will line up once more on the start line in London with her eyes firmly set on the three places available to female British athletes at the Tokyo Olympics this coming summer. It’s set to be an amazing race within a race, and I can’t wait to see how Hayley gets on.
Races and events featured include:
Tipton BMC 3000m 21st May 2019
University of Birmingham 3000m 5th June 2019
Tipton BMC 5000m 18th June 2019
Walsall Arboretum Parkrun 29th June 2019
Highgate Night of the 10,000m PBs 6th July 2019
British Athletics Championships 25th August 2019
Redditch Edgar Nicholls 10,000m 31st August 2019
Strength and Conditioning at the University of Wolverhampton with Rhys Lincoln – RL Performance.
Music via Artlist
I released ‘A Summer on Track with Hayley Carruthers’ on 27th January via a YouTube premiere, and have been stunned by the reception it has received in its first ten days. Thank you to all who have watched it, and for the kindness and support you have shown to Hayley. The video embeds on this page are from Vimeo – the quality is higher than on YouTube – though of course you can watch it on YouTube too if you prefer.