One of the world's speediest mums was congratulated by her 22-month-old daughter as she savoured victory in the New York marathon this weekend. Paula Radcliffe got a special hug from her toddler Isla after she beat off a field of long distance running's finest to take the title for the second time since giving birth to the little girl.
Eleven weeks after experiencing heartbreak at the Beijing Olympics, the British athlete practically strolled across the finish line – her nearest rival 1 minute 47 seconds behind her.
The year has ended on a high note for the marathon heroine after a period of injuries and disaster, including being placed 23rd at the Olympics.
Overjoyed Paula, who has won the Big Apple race three times in total, said: "New York is a place I love to come to, even when I am not running. It always seems to bring the best out in me."
And next time she returns it may even be with a playmate for Isla. The 34-year-old has spoken of taking another career break before the London Games in 2012 to add to her family.