SOUTH coast ace Steve Way will allow himself a few celebratory drinks following his top-ten finish in the Commonwealth Games marathon – but he won’t be going overboard as he continues to try and inspire others.

Just seven years ago 40-year-old Way was a self-confessed potato couch, smoking 20 cigarettes a day and weighing 16-and-a-half stone.

Fast forward to 2014 and he can now lay claim to being the fastest Englishman at Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games and the new British record holder for runners aged 40 and over after coming home tenth.

Way’s time of 2hrs 15mins and 16secs beat Ron Hill’s previous record held since 1979 by 30 seconds and smashed his previous personal best set when he finished 15th at this year’s London Marathon.

He even led the race for the first few miles and the quickly emerging marathon star admitted he was happy to act as a role model for others.

“I’m absolutely delighted – this is the best day ever,” said Bournemouth-based Way, who refused to rule out attempting to make the team for the Rio 2016 Olympics.

“My top goals were top ten, PB, British record and I’ve managed all three so I’ve couldn’t have hoped for a better day.

“I’m going to have a pint or a couple as I haven’t had one for three months.

“Unfortunately I can’t go completely off the rails because I’ve got a 90km trail race in Sweden at the end of August.

“I hope I’m an inspiration. Just to have one person say they’ve given running a try because of me makes it all worthwhile, but I’ve certainly had more than one.”

Way recently won the New Forest 10 mile race in Brockenhurst.

Commonwealth Games England (CGE) leads and manages the participation of the Team England at the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games. We work with sports, Sponsors and Sport England to support the development of athletes and their sports, and to achieve success at Games-time.