Former British Olympic sprinter Christian Malcolm has been named the new head coach of UK Athletics.The 41-year-old Welshman is currently head of performance at Australia Athletics and will take up his new position later this year. Last month UKA appointed Sara Symington as its new performance director.
Words can’t describe how excited I am, as an athlete I knew I wanted to give back to the sport when I finished competing. In all my coaching and advisory roles so far, I have wanted to help athletes avoid the errors I made and support them and their coaches to get the best out of themselves.Christian Malcom
Malcolm is understood to have been chosen ahead of Stephen Maguire and Peter Eriksson, and will have less than a year to prepare for the postponed Tokyo Olympics. Since retiring as an athlete in 2014, Malcolm has fulfilled coaching roles with the successful British relay squads, as well as working with the UK Paralympic team and Disability Wales.
He won the UK Sports Awards HP Coach of the Year and BBC Wales Coach of the Year in 2017 and worked as a speed coach for the England cricket team and Wales rugby team. He moved to Australia last year with the aim to make Australian athletes more competitive at elite level.
Here is press blurb:
British Athletics has today announced Christian Malcolm as the newly appointed Olympic Programme Head Coach.
Malcolm, who since January 2019 has been Head of Performance and Coaching at Athletics Australia was appointed following an open recruitment process and will take up his post later this year. As Head Coach Malcolm will work alongside athletes and coaches to support performances across all disciplines and event groups, as well as lead the Great Britain & Northern Ireland senior teams at major championships.
Following an impressive competitive career from which he retired in 2014, Malcolm had previously been British Athletics technical lead for sprint relays, a position he held from March 2015 to December 2019. The highlight of that was the double sprint relay medals won by the 4x100m teams at the home World Championships London 2017. The women’s team won silver, whilst the men’s 4x100m team won a global gold sprint relay medal for the first time since the Athens Olympics in 2004.
This achievement saw Malcolm named jointly Coach of the Year at the 2017 BBC Sports Personality awards, alongside Stephen Maguire and Benke Blomkvist.
As a coach to individual athletes he has also enjoyed success in the para athletics programme, most notably in his role as a Performance Coach at Disability Sport Wales for just under three years. He coached Jordan Howe to T35 100m silver and Rhys Jones to a personal best – finishing fourth in the T37 100m – at the World Para Athletics Championships London 2017.
Before his 2014 retirement Malcolm had represented Great Britain & Northern Ireland to the highest level. His World junior sprint double gold in 1998 heralded his credentials to the sport, going on to compete in four Olympic Games. With European Indoor gold and silver, World Indoor and European Championship silver, Commonwealth silver and bronze, as well as two World bronze medals as part of the GB & NI 4x100m relay team, his competitive career has certainly helped underpin his success in the coaching ranks.
At Athletics Australia Malcolm was tasked with ensuring the coaching structures were world class, working with the high-performance team to support elite athletes and their coaches towards major championships.