Minichiello Named UK Coach of the YearSubscribe
Jessica Whitehorn 21 November 2012
Several graduates of UK Sport’s coach development programmes, including Olympic Heptathlon Champion Jessica Ennis’ coach Toni Minichiello, were recognised for their achievements in this Olympic and Paralympic year at sportscoachUK’s UK Coaching Awards 2012, supported by Gillette.
UKA’s Minichiello was named both High-Performance Coach of the Year and UK Coach of the Year 2012 for the part he played in one of the most memorable nights of London 2012 where Ennis, Mo Farah and Greg Rutherford all struck gold in the Olympic stadium, much to the delight of the home fans.
Minichiello graduated from UK Sport’s three year Elite Coach programme in 2009. The programme helped foster in him the skills he needed to lead a multidisciplinary team of experts in performance analysis, conditioning and rehabilitation, who were crucial to Jessica's recovery from a serious foot injury in 2008 to win Olympic gold in 2012.
Other winners on the night who have benefitted from the bespoke development opportunities offered to coaches by UK Sport included British Cycling’s Paul Manning and GB Rowing’s Paul Stannard. Manning, who graduated from the Elite Coaching Apprenticeship Programme (ECAP) in 2011, won 2012 High Performance Team Coach of the Year. An Olympic Champion at Beijing 2008 in the men’s team pursuit, Manning took up coaching in 2009. Initially working with the men’s under 23 endurance academy, Manning went on to coach the women’s endurance squad who took two gold medals at London 2012, the first secured by the formidable Team Pursuit trio of Laura Trott, Jo Rowsell and Dani King and the second a solo effort by Trott in the Omnium.
Paul Stannard is a current ECAP participant, set to graduate from the programme in 2013. Stannard was named 2012 Performance Development Coach of the Year in recognition of his role in the early rowing careers of athletes like Helen Glover and Heather Stanning, who won GB Rowing’s first ever female gold medal and Team GB’s first gold medal at the London 2012 Games this summer. Stannard, who coached on the GB Rowing Team's START Programme where both Glover and Stanning began their Olympic journey, has worked closely with UK Sport’s UK Talent Team, who discovered Glover through the ‘Sporting Giants’ talent ID scheme in 2007.
Other finalists included current ECAP participant Barrie Collie, who was nominated for 2012 Development Coach of the Year for his work with British Gymnastics, and Alan Olive, UK Sport’s High Performance Coaching Manager, who was nominated for 2012 Coach Educator of the Year for his work supporting coach development across many different sports.
There was also recognition for all the coaches of London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games gold medal winners, who were inducted into the Coaching Hall of Fame. Those recognised included treble London 2012 Paralympic Champion Sophie Christiansen’s Para-Dressage coach Clive Milkins, who will graduate from UK Sport’s ECAP at next week’s World Class Performance Conference in Leeds, and another ECAP Alumni Nick Smith, coach to Canoe Slalom Olympic Champions Etienne Stott and Tim Baillie.
UK Sport’s Head of Coaching Graham Taylor said: “UK Sport is delighted to have supported some of the coaches recognised at the UK Coaching Awards in such a magnificent year for British sport.
“The achievements of coaches are too often overlooked, but our athletes simply would not be able to perform at the highest level without them, so for British sport to continue to thrive on the world stage we must continue to champion our coaches and support their professional development.”
Elsewhere, Peter Eriksson, Head Coach of UK Athletics’ Paralympic squad at London 2012, widely acclaimed for the transformation of the team who placed 18th in the athletics medal table at Beijing 2008 and rose to third at London 2012, picked up High Performance Paralympic Coach of the Year.
Meanwhile the coaches of Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee won the Coaching Chain: Appreciation of Coaching Award that recognises coaches who have helped athletes along the way to elite success. The Coaching Chain awards went to Tony Kingham and Charles Lines who encouraged and developed the Brownlee brothers’ running and triathlon at Bradford Grammar School, Corrinne Tantrum who provided tailored swimming training for the duo at City of Bradford Swimming Club, and Malcolm Brown and Jack Maitland who together have helped them to Olympic and World Championship glory.
Other winners on the night were:
• High Performance Coach of the Year (non Olympic/Paralympic) – Michael Bannon
• Heather Crouch Young Coach of the Year: Olivia Bryl - Gymnastics
• Children’s Coach of the Year – Supported by sportscotland: Tom Middleton - Volleyball
• Gillette Community Coach of the Year: Q Shillingford - Boxing
• Lifetime Achievement Award: Sheila Perks - Netball
• Coach Educator of the Year - Supported by Coachwise: Belinda Tarling - Cycling
• Coaching Intervention of the Year: Sport Northern Ireland – Active Communities