Champions

Most of Britain’s post-War Olympic champions learnt their athletics trade by progressing through the pyramid of competitions organised by ESAA. 

176 ESAA Girls competitors won medals at one or more of these major championships after 1960. They include the following:

  •  7 Olympic Gold Medallists and 31 other Olympic Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  •  6 World Gold Medallists and 24 other World Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  •  9 European Gold Medallists and 59 other European Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  • 32 Commonwealth Games Gold Medallists and 117 other Commonwealth Games Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)

180 ESAA Boys competitors won medals at one or more of these major championships. They include the following:

  • 7 Olympic Gold Medallists and 34 other Olympic Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  • 7 World Gold Medallists and 34 other World Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  • 25 European Gold Medallists and 51 other European Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)
  • 48 Commonwealth Games Gold Medallists and 97 other Commonwealth Games Medallists (Silver, Bronze or Relay)

Click on a photo and have a look at the records of some famous names and see how they fared at the championships.

Daley Thompson
Kelly Holmes
Jessica Ennis-Hill
Greg Rutherford
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I started my association with ESAA as a youngster in 1967, taking part in both the Cross Country and Track and Field Championships. I experienced the biggest schools’ event in the world and will never forget those memories.

Becoming a PE teacher in a comprehensive school in a deprived area, sport was of great importance to the youngsters. The school took part in the Track and Field Cup Competition, which combined individual performances with the team ethic. Success through the rounds gave the whole school a lift. Alongside this, the school produced a number of individual winners at the Track and Field Championships.

I became increasingly involved in Bucks County Athletics as an organiser, team manager and finally their president. With a personal interest in multi-events, I arranged trials for over 100 athletes. This led to Bucks having a number of winning teams at the finals.

The County put me forward for a place on the ESAA General Committee. This Committee does a wonderful job in running the national competitions and I have been honoured to be a team manager for England teams at multi-events competitions. My passion for multi-events led me to take up the post of Midlands Regional Coordinator. This has given me the opportunity to work with wonderful people – Roger Blades, National Coordinator for many years, and a super group of county organisers for the Midland Counties.

To show how the ESAA helps develop young athletes, I met a 9 year-old in a primary school one day. At 11, I encouraged him to join the local athletics club. He went on to represent his county on 5 occasions at the Track and Field Championships – never winning gold. In 2012, he won Olympic Gold in the long jump at the London Olympics…… Thanks to the ESAA!”

Rick Townsend
ESAA General Committee