By RON FANFAIR
Athletics Canada Coach of the Year Anthony McLeary and former national sprinter Desai Williams have been added to the National Sprint & Speed Development training centre in Toronto.
McLeary who, together with Williams, coach athletes at the Elite Edge Club in Pickering, said he received a call from Athletics Canada head coach Alex Gardiner asking if he would be interested in the assignment.
“I jumped at the opportunity because it’s a good thing,” said McLeary, who coaches 2008 Beijing Olympics 100-metre hurdles bronze medalist Priscilla Lopes-Schliep. “It gives me more time to work with other athletes and it creates some freedom to see if I can be part of a group that can help to produce more top class athletes.”
McLeary will focus on a small group of elite level athletes, including Lopes-Schliep, selected “Rising Stars” and identified “Team 2016″ athletes while Williams will fill the role of sprint centre coach, concentrating on a selected group of identified high performance stream athletes comprising carded and Athletics Ontario-identified high performance athletes.
“The sprints and speed related events are highly prioritized within Athletics Canada’s High Performance plan towards the London Olympics Games and beyond,” said Athletics Canada Chief High Performance Officer Martin Goulet. “In order for us to be successful in a sustainable fashion, our demographic and historical analysis has led us to clear conclusions on how essential it is to systematically tap into the Toronto talent pool.”
McLeary, Williams and former Canadian Olympian Molly Killingbeck, who heads the National Development Centre, will work closely with relays and sprints national program lead coach Glenroy Gilbert and Gardiner to ensure alignment with strategic goals and to prepare athletes to meet established benchmarks.