Former Ashwicken man David Heath has been named European Best Male Master Athlete 2015.
Heath, who did all his early training and competition in the West Norfolk area, is a former Lynn News Sportsman of the Year.
Heath, who is now based in France, is just beginning his 40th year in competitive athletics, and he has lost none of the enthusiasm.
Heath also coaches the middle distance group at his club CA Balma in Toulouse, and includes 2013 European Cross Country Champion Sophie Duarte amongst his successful athletes.
This was a great year for Heath. Competing against senior athletes throughout the winter, he decided to turn his attention to masters 800m and 1500m in the summer, with his focus being Lyon and Beijing. His winter work was rewarded with victory at Lyon in the M50 800m and 1500m, and a further victory in the 800m at Beijing in the inaugural Masters 800m event during the World Championships. It also brought him a European record in the 800m and a World record in the 1500m.
He said: “Beijing was a wonderful experience.
“The atmosphere and the comradeship with all the masters athletes made it an unforgettable time, and really made me appreciate masters athletics.”
A summary of Heath’s season: June 21 Castres, France 1500m 3’58.26. July – 4 Paris Diamond 800m 1’58.90; 29 Castres, France 800m 1’58.72; 9 Lyon 800m 2’01.93; 14 Lyon 1500m 4’01.54.August – 29 Beijing 800m 2’00.92.
Heath has just taken a well-earned break for the whole of September, and is now looking forward to training again.in preparation for next season.