Chris Thompson toasted creating Great South Run history and revealed: I’m buzzing.
The Aldershot, Farnham & District ace became the first athlete to rack up a hat-trick of victories in the Portsmouth and Southsea race on Sunday.
Having been crowned champion in 2016 and 2017, Thompson delivered a superb performance to clinch the affair for a third straight year.
He stopped the clock on 46min 56sec, setting a personal best over the 10-mile distance in the process.
Thompson fought off the challenge of Stubbington-born Andy Vernon, who finished second with a time of 47.29. Petros Surafel (48.05) was back in third.
The now three-time winner grabbed the race by the scruff of the neck in the latter stages – great preparation for his assault on the New York Marathon next month.
Thompson, however, revealed he struggled to get into a rhythm in the early stages, despite keeping pace with Vernon.
It was when the 37-year-old could see his Aldershot team-mate struggling after seven miles that he decided to pounce.
And Thompson was delighted his tactics paid off.
He said: ‘Creating history in whatever form, especially something like this, is amazing – I’m buzzing.
‘I’ve got New York in two weeks and I’m going to struggle to wipe the smile off my face for the next two weeks.
‘That was pretty special to win it in front of that many people with that kind of a time – I’m absolutely buzzing.
‘Four the first four or five miles I was struggling to stay in the race because I’ve got a lot of running in the legs.
‘I was feeling a bit groggy and it wasn’t until about the seven-mile mark that I started to get into a rhythm.
‘I tried to assess how Andy was and I realised he was showing signs of fatigue. That was my moment and it was at about seven-and-a-half miles that I thought I’d try to win the race in the next two miles.
‘Thankfully it worked and I was sort of able to enjoy the last half a mile.
‘It was tactical, we know each other’s quirks and we’re both tough as old boots.
‘To drop each other is not easy and I'm really chuffed to have beaten one of Britain's finest athletes.
‘He’s a local boy so a I feel a bit bad – but not too bad!’
Thompson became the first athlete to deliver three successive Great South Run wins.
Gary Staines has a trio of victories to his name but missed out on glory in 1995 between his triumphs in 1993, 1994 and 1996.
Thompson's time of 46.56 also sees him rub shoulders with Sir Mo Farah for breaking the 47-minute barrier.
He added: ‘Only three British athletes have broken 47 minutes on this course – myself, Mo and Gary.
‘We were all coached by the same guy, Alan Storey.
‘To do it clocking a personal best is pretty exciting.’
Thompson now turns his attention to the New York Marathon on Sunday, November 4.
And his Portsmouth triumph has filled him with confidence ahead of his Big Apple charge.
‘I’ve got to get to New York now and finish the job off,’ said Thompson.
‘As much as I'd love to celebrate tonight, I’ll have an early night and will eat a lot of pasta and I’m back training on Monday.
‘New York is not just a big race because it’s a city marathon but a marathon is a battle of attrition for the body and mind as well as being a race.
‘You want to feel as confident as you can on the start line and respect what you’re about to do.
‘There’s always that risk of racing this close but thankfully my body is holding up – but I have to keep respecting it.’