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UK Athletics

New Road Running Leadership Group appointments announced

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4 April 2008



Following the recent election of Hilary Walker, Nigel Jones and Andrew Taylor to UK Athletics' Road Running Leadership Group (RRLG), an appointments panel has now met to confirm additional members of the group and a new Chair.

The appointments panel consisted of the three elected members plus Ed Warner, Mike Summers and Geoff Wightman, representing UK Athletics, England Athletics and the Celtic Nations respectively.  The panel agreed the following:

1.  Geoff Wightman, Chief Executive of Scottish Athletics, will succeed Ed Warner as chairman with immediate effect.

2.  Hugh Brasher, Chief Executive Officer of Sweatshop and promoter of the Asics Reading Half Marathon, Experian Robin Hood Festival of Running will be appointed to serve on the group as a full voting member.

3.  Dave Bedford, Race Director of the Flora London Marathon, and Max Coleby, co-founder of the BUPA Great North Run, will be co-opted onto the group in non-voting advisory capacities.

4.  An second member with full voting rights will be appointed by the six members of the panel at the earliest possible opportunity.  The panel agreed that this additional member will be chosen on the basis on his or her expertise in organising small road races, and would ensure that the new group balances the interests of large and grassroots races.

In addition, UK Athletics has confirmed that Alan Storey, Senior Performance Manager for Endurance, will replace Zara Hyde Peters as its representative on the group.

Outgoing chairman Ed Warner said "I am delighted with the work of the RRLG to date, and am pleased that it can now enter its next phase of activity under Geoff's Chairmanship with such an experienced team of members representing all interests in road running. The new road race licences commence in April and shortly after a web portal for race organisers will be launched, the first element of a comprehensive online resource for the sport."

New chairman Geoff Wightman is fully aware of the challenges and opportunities ahead.  "Thanks to Ed for his chairmanship of the RRLG for the past twelve months and to Mike Summers for his work as Project Manager", said Wightman. "The new arrangements which they have helped introduce will be the first steps towards Britain's road racing set-up becoming the best in the world in terms of common medical, policing and safety standards and general support, which will benefit race organisers and runners at all levels. Long term, we also hope to create an environment where performance levels can rise. In my year as chair, we will look to co-opt and work with all of the individuals and organisations that can help make that happen for road running."