ULTRA running star Jo Murphy says she can’t wait to take on the globe’s best when she goes on the run in Germany this weekend.

The Crossgates competitor is making the journey to Berlin to race in the 100K World Championships, which will be held for the 31st time.

Jo, 34, will represent Great Britain at the event on Saturday having secured her qualification with a stunning, record-breaking performance en-route to winning Scottish and British titles in April.

She was racing in the Anglo Celtic Plate competition, which brings together teams from Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to compete over the mammoth distance, with the three leading runners from each counting towards their country’s overall position.

It also doubled as the Scottish and British 100K championship races and Jo, a member of Carnegie Harriers previously, overhauled her rivals to cross the winning line in a time of seven hours, 41 minutes and 12 seconds.

Not only was that a personal best, it also saw her take the female course record which had stood since 2011, when former Great Britain international, Emily Gelder, ran the distance in 8:00.30.

Jo’s efforts secured her place on the Great Britain team that will compete in Berlin and, speaking to Press Sport as she prepared to travel to Germany yesterday (Thursday), she said: “The last four months have gone in a flash.

“I had time to recover, then I was back training again, and now the race is just upon me. I feel like I’m not ready, but I know I am.

“It’s new and it’s exciting because it’s Berlin and because I’m part of the Great Britain squad.

“It’s a different stage altogether. It’s huge and you’re obviously racing against the best of the best but, if you can’t go and run in that kind of competition, and if that’s not going to excite you, what will?

“It’ll be such a highly-competitive field that I’m just happy to be able to go out there and get the opportunity to run with those people.

“If I perform well, that would just be amazing as well.”

In addition to putting in the hours, and miles, at home – including on the treadmill, in a bid to prepare for potentially warm conditions on race day – Jo travelled to northern Italy with members of her training group, ‘Our Seven’, for a 10-day training camp.

Two of those, Ollie Garrod, who is in the senior men’s squad, and Sam Amend, who joins Jo in the senior women’s team, having finished second in Perth, will also be taking on the 7.5-kilometre loop around the German capital.

“It’s a very different route to Perth,” Jo noted.

“I’ve tried to prepare the best I could. I’ve had sauna sessions, treadmill sessions, and we’ve had good weather for most of the summer. I went to Italy for a training camp for 10 days, at the end of July, start of August, as part of the training team I’m with.

“I came back feeling fit, refreshed and motivated for the World Championships. It was nice being away.

“I’ve prepared the best I can for the heat. If it’s 25-27 (degrees Celsius), I’ll be OK, if it’s higher, I’ll have to tailor my pace. Anything cooler is ideal for me!

“It’s shown that I look to be in similar shape to April so I was pleased with that. That gave me a confidence boost, so you never know.

“The indicators are that I’m on the right track. I’m feeling good and feeling positive.”

Jo’s success in Perth saw her climb from fourth to third in the all-time Scottish rankings for the distance she is competing in, and into sixth in the British standings.

“Chipping away” at her time remains a continuous goal as she aims to try to reach the top of the Scottish list but, for now, she is relishing the opportunity to mix it with the world’s top ultra runners, even if there are some nerves.

“I am nervous, but I’m not daunted by the World Championships,” Jo continued.

“I am excited to compete in such a highly-competitive field. It’s good to know that I’m in that company and I think it will get the best out of myself. It can only be of benefit.

“I like big events and competing in a big field. It’s my first British vest, other than one in a ‘virtual’ six-hour race during COVID times, so just wearing that is pretty special.

“There’s an opening ceremony, similar but on a smaller scale to things like the Olympics, so that’s pretty cool. It still feels a bit weird!”