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Visa delays end British marathoner’s hopes of competing at Worlds

U.S. visa delays have been a common theme at the 2022 World Championships, and have derailed many international athletes' hopes of competing here in Oregon

Photo by: W/C

U.K. Athletics has confirmed that Chris Thompson, a 2:10-marathoner from Team GB, will not compete in the World Athletics Championships men’s marathon this Sunday after a significant delay in the processing of his U.S. visa.

According to the UKA press release, Thompson had been in close liaison with World Athletics and received some help from the U.K. government to solve a last-minute visa hold-up, however, due to the proximity of Sunday’s marathon, Thompson is unable to travel and compete.

“We are very sad for Chris that he has been unable to travel to Eugene for the World Athletics Championships. We are grateful for the interventions and assistance of World Athletics in attempting to resolve the matter, but time has unfortunately run out,” said Team G.B. Leader, Paula Dunn.

The 41-year-old marathoner was selected to represent Team GB after running a personal best 2:10:21 at the British Marathon Championships in 2021. Last year, Thompson placed 54th at the Tokyo Olympic Marathon in a time of 2:21:29.

chris thompson visa
Chris Thompson at the 2019 Vitality London Half. Photo: W/C

“I’m absolutely devastated I won’t be in Eugene to compete,” said Thompson in a statement. “This was my major aim for the year and had prepared well for it. I’ll never know what might have been, but I had high expectations of myself going out. It should never have got to this point, and it’s hard to believe it has.” 

U.S. visa delays have been a common theme at the 2022 World Championships, which has derailed many international athletes’ hopes of competing here in Oregon.

The 2022 World Athletics Championships begin Friday at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore. All the action in Eugene will be brought to you by Canadian Running and Asics Canada. Follow us on Twitter on Instagram for all things Team Canada and up-to-date exclusive news and content.

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