Fudge to oversee programme which will draw upon expertise of Mo Farah’s coach Alberto Salazar and see Paula Radcliffe in a mentor role
Barry Fudge, current lead of sports science at UKA, has been appointed as the national governing body’s head of endurance.
His appointment forms part of an Olympic performance programme restructure ahead of the Rio Games in 2016.
Under the leadership of performance director Neil Black, Fudge will fill one of three roles that replace the Olympic head coach position, with similar appointments for sprints and throws/jumps/combined event areas to be confirmed in the New Year.
As a part of the endurance programme, Alberto Salazar, coach of Mo Farah, will advise in a consultancy capacity from his base in the USA while “key advisors” including marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe will offer guidance and mentoring for athletes.
Rob Denmark and Jon Bigg, coaches to 800m talent Jessica Judd and European under-23 1500m silver medallist Charlie Grice respectively, have been appointed as contracted coaches benefitting from a supported development programme. They will begin their roles this month travelling to Portland alongside Fudge to work with Salazar.
“Barry is a world renowned expert in developing endurance programmes, most recently as a key part of the team around Mo Farah,” commented Black. “In discussing the way forward for endurance with the endurance advisory panel, Barry received unanimous support as the individual with precisely the skill set to work alongside both coaches and athletes to add value and accelerate progress.
“He will not be coaching himself. His role, supported by Alberto, Paula and others, is to ensure that both athletes and their coaches make the most of the opportunity that being on the Olympic performance programme affords them.”
Speaking of his appointment, Fudge said: “I am delighted to have the opportunity to take the work we have done with Mo and use those learnings across a number of other coach-athlete pairings.
“We will have the benefit of working alongside some of the most talented endurance coaches in the world, but I am also excited about the opportunities this brings to home grown coaching talent like Rob and Jon and others like them.
“The aim will be to offer the best possible input and support to our top medal hopes whilst working alongside our developing coach and athlete talent to bridge that gap toward podium performances.”