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UK Athletics

blog spot: uka futures programme - dan cossins

Danny Talbot
Dan Cossins coached Danny Talbot to this summer's European U23 Championships (above)

11 October 2011

Dan Cossins is coach to sprinter Danny Talbot who made his Aviva GB & NI debut at the 2010 IAAF World Junior championships in Canada and was selected this summer to represent the Aviva GB & NI team at this summer's European Under-23 Championships and IAAF World Championships in Daegu.

Watch out for more blogs from UKA Futures Programme coaches on www.uka.org.uk 

Blog Spot: Dan Cossins

User AvatarPosted by Site Administrator at 16/6/2011 9:29:01 AM

Dan Cossins is coach to 19-year-old sprinter Danny Talbot who made his Aviva GB & NI debut at the 2010 IAAF World Junior championships in Canada. Talbot is currently ranked number one in the UK senior rankings for 200m and number five over 100m. 

The last few months have proven to be the most exciting of my coaching career so far. After setting targets for Danny on the track and in the gym last September, all of which he beat easily, we sat down in March to re-assess what was possible.

He wiped away those new targets in his first few races of the year with times of 10.21 and 20.54 for the 100m and 200m, so I really think the sky is the limit.

Danny is now performing at a level that was unattainable for me as an athlete. I feel that’s really a huge advantage for him as I have a personal motivation to help him get to the highest level possible because my goals in this respect were left largely unfulfilled (I’m like the father who never did it himself and lives his dreams through his kids!)

All of a sudden there is a lot of interest surrounding Danny and me and what we are getting up to down in the West Country...the media training he did through the UKA Futures Programme in May is definitely coming in useful! It’s also been strange to speak to people like Neil Black (UKA’s medical lead) and Tony Lester (UKA’s National Event Coach for Sprints) on the phone...they’re people I was well aware of as an athlete but I’m not sure they were so aware of me! What has been even stranger is to hear that Head Coach Charles Van Commenee is particularly interested to see how Danny is progressing. All of the performance staff have been incredibly supportive in the last few weeks since Danny’s breakthrough, especially after he sustained a slight hamstring pull running in a 4 x 100m for the Aviva GB & NI team recently. We are hugely appreciative of all the efforts that have been put our way.

With Danny’s improvement has come selection for the European Team Championships in Stockholm this weekend. He was also briefly due to race against Usain Bolt in Oslo last Thursday, although his hammy tweak put an end to that. As these competitions were not on the schedule for us until recently, I have been sure to reiterate to Danny that his eye must stay on our major aims this year: bring back a medal from the European U23’s and after that, gain selection for the senior World Championships. All these things are nice as an extra, but not top of our priority list, and I have to keep the ultimate goal in mind at all times, which is to be on that start line in London next year. If Danny gets there, it’s a guarantee that Bolt will come eventually.

On top of everything that has happened with Danny, it has also been particularly satisfying to see another of my youngsters, Scott Bajere, make a bit of a name for himself in the junior ranks. Having run a hand timed 10.5 last weekend, I’m sure there’s more to come from him. I believe Scott typifies the type of athlete who is too often overlooked in our sport – he’s a “Try-er”.  I’ve coached Scott for three years and most of his performances have left him quite frustrated, especially when he’s been watching others like Danny and Emily Diamond (who trained here until she went to Loughborough) running all the special times. Danny is proof that if the talent is there, and you work hard and stay injury free, in the end, the times you dream of just may come.

The athletes are this week entering into what I call the competition maintenance phase. They will now rotate sessions (of which there are nine) of pure speed, acceleration and speed endurance at varying levels of intensity until the end of the season. Most of the hard work has been done, so I use this method, which I took from talks with Dan Pfaff (who I must also thank for his help and support towards Danny and myself), as I feel it allows the athletes enough down time whilst not letting the hard training and fitness slip away. Only time will tell us what Danny and Scott can achieve this year.

The UKA Futures Programme underpins the World Class Performance Programme (WCPP) and was borne out of the restructure of UKA’s WCPP and the drive towards more targeted support for athletes and their coaches.

The Programme targets young athletes with the potential to deliver global medals for Britain in the future.

Athletes and their coaches will be supported in their individual development plans allowing for more flexibility and individual discretion around distribution of resources. 28 coach-athlete pairs have been included in the 2010/11 Futures Programme.