Oxford University Athletics Club

Coaches

Mark Thomas

Events: Sprints

Qualifications: UK level 4 coach, sprints & 4 x 100m relay, 400m & 4 x 400m relay

Mark has been the mastermind behind our powerful 400 metre relay squads of recent years which have come 4th, 6th, 3rd and 2nd in the last four years, breaking the Oxford record in the last two BUCS Finals.


Eric Brees

Events: Sprints, Relays and Hurdles
Qualifications: UK Level 4 Sprints & Hurdles

Eric has spend a long time in the sport. His roles as coach have ranged from team to event-specific coaching positions, with his time being shared between his local club Enfield & Haringey, the SEAA teams competing within UK and Europe, and his work (in his words) “with the mighty OUAC”. Over the years he has been involved in BAAB Coaching Education, lecturing and practical coaching to Levels 1, 2 and 3. He has also spent time as a “mentor” to coaches outside his club. He has been involved as a coach and director for 31 years at the Bournemouth Young Athletes Course. Finally he has recently been part of the coaching team for Active Sports Development, a programme set up to nature talented athletes. He was invited to join OUAC in the 1989/1990 season and is pleased to be able to say that he’s still popping down as and when! He has told us that he “very much enjoys meeting athletes, having a hand in their development and watching their progress no matter how large or small.” He says that “my highlight of the year is our annual trips to Portugal, which are always a pleasure to attend and offer a great opportunity for OUAC athletes to train and bond together before the season kicks off.”


Colin Mitchell

Events: Sprints

Colin started working with OUAC in 2009, having spent many years coaching at Abingdon AC, and quickly earned his place in the hearts of the sprinters with his focus on pure speed ensuring that sharpness is maintained even in the depths of hard winter training. Now providing sessions on alternate Wednesdays to ensure that session runs every week, we are delighted at the 50% increase in his coaching time.


Jenny Harris

Events: Middle and long distance

Jenny, the England Athletics National Coach Mentor for Youth Endurance events, arrived as coach to OUCCC and OUAC in 2011 and set about modernising our long distance training. Our skinnies have quickly become not so skinny with the introduction of more conditioning sessions to complement the necessary mileage work on the roads and sessions on the track. Oxford’s strong tradition in the middle distances has been maintained with the emergence of Tom Frith making the last two BUCS 1500 finals and Jess Chen breaking into the all time top 10 for 3000 and 5000. With her feet now firmly under the table, expect more such performances from Jenny’s athletes in the coming years.


Ian Marriott

Events: Shot, Discus and Javelin

Ian was hired as lead OUAC throws coach in 2012 and quickly demonstrated that, although he had been primarily been a decathlon coach in the past, he was perfectly capable of developing specialist skills in the throws events. For the two previous years the throws had been dominated by Cambridge but his commitment to building a strong squad led to much more even results at the 2013 Varsity Match.


Kevin O'Hara

Events: Discus and Hammer

Based at Radley AC, where he has coached his daughter Emma to 2nd place in the UK Junior Rankings, Kevin welcomed OUAC athletes into his group in 2012 and they soon welcomed his expert eye being applied to their throwing. In particular, his work with the male Discus throwers close to Varsity was credited for the surprise 1-2 won in that event on Varsity day while the breaking of the Hammer record in the Women’s 2nd team match demonstrated the strength in depth that the squad developed for that event under his tutelage.


Richard Baderin

Events: Hurdles


Daniel Hooker

Events: Horizontal Jumps and Short Sprints


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