Arnold and Hillier get lead UK Athletics hurdles coach roles
Monday, 14 January 2013
January 14 - Malcolm Arnold has been appointed as lead hurdles coach in the latest appointment by the UK Athletics performance director Neil Black and head coach Peter Eriksson.
Arnold (pictured top), who has guided British athletes such as Colin Jackson and current charge Dai Greene to world titles, will continue to work at the University of Bath with James Hillier, who has been named as assistant coach.
Given the recent UK Athletics moves to concentrate resources at the Loughborough University high performance centre, the latest announcement is a particularly shiny badge of honour for the 72-year-old coach.
Arnold says he is excited by the opportunity of building on what he has already achieved in a coaching career spanning over four decades and produced an extraordinary opening flourish as he guided Uganda's John Akii-Bua to the Munich 1972 Olympic 400-metre hurdles title in a world record of 47.82sec.
"I'm delighted to have been given the opportunity to continue the work we have done over recent years," Arnold said.
"Both James and I are looking forward to new challenges under the leadership of Neil Black and Peter Eriksson and to furthering the excellence of hurdling in both competitors and coaches throughout the United Kingdom."
As well as former world, European and Commonwealth champion Greene, Arnold's group contains a number of top international hurdlers such as Lawrence Clarke, who came fourth in the 110m hurdles at the London 2012 Olympics, 2011 European junior silver medallist Andrew Pozzi, 2011 European under-23 silver medallist Nathan Woodward and London Olympians Jack Green and Eilidh Child.
The UK Athletics regional centre at Bath was the first established in 1999 under Arnold's leadership.
Since then more than 40 major medals have been won by athletes trained at Bath.
Appointed to the role of assistant coach, Hillier was previously a UK Athletics apprentice coach working under Arnold and completed his apprenticeship in 2012.
The former Commonwealth Games 400m hurdler is coach to 19-year-old James Gladman, who finished fourth in the 110m hurdles at the World Junior Championships in Barcelona last summer.
Eriksson, who oversaw Britain's Paralympic athletics in the four-year cycle leading to the London 2012 Games, believes that both Arnold and Hillier will play a key role in developing Great Britain's best hurdles athletes in the build-up to the next Olympic Games in Rio in 2016.
"Malcolm and James have had excellent success with their training group in Bath and it is great that they will have the chance to continue their work as we look to build on what we achieved in 2012 and have more success over the next Olympic cycle leading up to Rio in 2016 and beyond," Eriksson said.
"Malcolm has fantastic experience and I'm sure all of the athletes he works with will benefit from his vast knowledge in the coming years.
"James has also proven himself to be a very talented coach and I look forward to continuing to work both him and Malcolm moving forwards."
November 2011: Another gold for Malcolm Arnold at Sport Wales Coach of the Year awards
September 2011: Age no barrier for alchemist Arnold