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Desiree Henry

2 November 2012

World Youth gold medallist Desiree Henry (coach: Stanley Madiri), who finished fourth in the 200m at the IAAF World Junior Championships this summer is amongst 23 athlete-coach pairings invited to join the 2012/13 UKA Futures Programme.

2011 World Youth 200m champion Henry retains her place on the programme along with her training partner Jodie Williams (coach: Stanley Madiri) who took gold over both 100m and 200m in the 2011 European Junior Championships to add to her double gold from the 2009 World Youth Championships.

The Futures Programme - which underpins the World Class Performance Programme (WCPP) - was created four years ago to provide more targeted support for young talented athletes and their coaches.

It focuses on athletes who show the potential to ultimately achieve future success at the IAAF World Championships or Olympic Games, have the potential to be selected to the WCPP within two years and are typically in the 17- 20 age range, but with flexibility towards athletes who are deemed an exceptional case for support.

Other finalists from this summer’s IAAF World Junior Championships included on Futures into 2013 include Dina Asher-Smith (coach: John Blackie), Emily Dudgeon (coach: Stuart Hogg) and Jenny Walsh (coach: Deborah Rowlands) whilst Sophie McKinna (coach: Geoff Capes), Sophie Papps (coach: Neil Dodson), Nick Percy (coach: John Hillier), Elliot Safo (coach: John Shepherd) and Zak Seddon (coach: Jeff Seddon) are retained on the programme for a further year.

A total of nine athletes previously supported by the Futures programme have progressed to the World Class Performance Programme for 2012/13, including Emily Diamond, who was a member of Great Britain and Northern Ireland’s 4x400m Olympic relay squad, and 3000m World Junior bronze medallist Emelia Gorecka.

UKA Strategic Head of Coaching and Development Kevin Tyler said: “It is fantastic that through the UKA Futures Programme we are able support 23 athlete and coach partnerships. It is important to consider the factors that make progression to the WCPP within two years realistic but analysis of performance alone cannot predict an athlete’s future success accurately. By working closely with the athletes and their coaches we can support their development individually and allow for more flexibility and better distribution of resources. This will ultimately assist the athletes to improve their results, raise their profiles and maintain a positive training environment.”

UKA’s Development Manager Jo Jennings said: "As the Futures programme enters its fourth year, we are delighted to support these athletes and their coaches in their development plans towards success in the future.

“Our aim is that the programme, including financial assistance and medical support, will help the athletes follow in the footsteps of previous Futures athletes such as Robbie Grabarz, Holly Bleasdale, Lawrence Okoye, Andrew Pozzi and Ross Murray.

“As the Futures programme underpins the World Class Performance programme, athletes selected already demonstrate a very high level of achievement. So along with our nominations to SportsAid, we can support this tier of young athletes and their coaches - the next generation of champions.”

Full details on the UKA Futures Programme can be found on the UKA website at: http://uka.org.uk/world-class/uka-futures-programme/ 

UKA Futures Programme 2012/2013 Athletes and Coaches:

Dina Asher-Smith (coach: John Blackie), Loren Bleaken (coach: Adrian Clover), Lucy Bryan (coach: Charles Preston), Rowena Cole (coach: Norma Pugh), Emily Dudgeon (coach: Stuart Hogg), Jarryd Dunn (coach: Keith Holt), Annabel Gummow (coach: Neville Taylor), Desiree Henry (coach: Stanley Madiri), Louisa James (coach: Ron James), Izzy Jeffs (coach: Esa Utrainen), Sophie McKinna (coach: Geoff Capes), Laura Muir (coach: Andy Young), Michael Painter (coach: John Painter), Sophie Papps (coach: Neil Dodson), Nick Percy (coach: John Hillier), Elliot Safo (coach: John Shepherd), Zak Seddon (coach: Jeff Seddon), Matthew Shirling (coach: Adrian Webb), Emily Stewart (coach: Ian Whyte), Josh Street (coach: Matthew Thomas), Jenny Walsh (coach: Deborah Rowlands), Ronnie Wells (coach: James Hillier), Jodie Williams (coach: Stanley Madiri).