‘United approach works best because everyone has role to play’ – Colin Hutchison

Friday 15th July 2022

By Colin Hutchison, CEO

The summer of 2022 must be one the biggest ever in our sport.

From Oregon to Birmingham and then on towards Munich, there is so much to look forward to this summer in international athletics.

Domestically, however, on the ground where the magic happens, we are grateful once again to see clubs at full flow and to have a summer of athletics events across Scotland.

#SALtogether has been a favourite tagline of scottishathletics since the publication of the national strategy ‘Building a Culture of Success’ in 2018.

It perfectly describes everything that is great about athletics in Scotland – everyone working together to make the sport accessible, provide training and competition in every local authority across the country, and supporting people to achieve their ambitions.

Everyone involved in athletics in Scotland plays a critical role in making the sport happen and it has been enjoyable to see how the sport has come together over the last two years.

We often rightly reflect on the role of clubs, leaders, coaches and Officials in the recovery and I feel it is also important to highlight the work of event organisers – the vast majority who are volunteers.

It  has been so impressive to witness the speed in which events have returned, the innovation that was shown to offer competition over the past two years, and the flexibility to adjust to all the requirements requested.

Their work is greatly appreciated and has been vital in bringing athletes back to the sport.

Roon the Toon’s Ian Gebbie of Kilmarnock Harriers exemplifies event organisers who make a big contribution to our sport (photo by Bobby Gavin) 

#SALtogether also stretches beyond the core elements of the sport and reflects the role of key partners in athletics in Scotland.

From those that support clubs and athletes locally, to our national partners that have continued to offer support to scottishathletics throughout the last two years backing our national programmes and events.

Whilst it is hard not to get caught up in what is still to come this summer, it is important to pause and reflect on some great achievements in the sport already this year across various events.

We are now well into double figures for the number of Scottish Records that have been broken this year with some impressive indoor performances being followed up with some significant long standing outdoor Records being taken down.

After 40 years, Jake Wightman set a new Record in the mile, Eilish McColgan took 38 seconds of her mum’s 31-year-old 10,000m Record, Alisha Rees broke the 48-year 100m record and Jack Lawrie set a new 400m hurdles record after 21 years.

Congratulations to all the athletes that have set new, or equalled, National Records.

On the hills there has also been some considerable success at Senior and age group level already this year and 10 Scots have been selected across the IAU European 24-Hour Championships and European Off-Road Running Championships over the summer.

As we approach a historic summer, I want to offer congratulations to all the Scottish athletes that have been selected to represent Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Oregon and Team Scotland in Birmingham this summer.

It is fantastic to see such a strong Scottish contingent in the GB and NI teams for the World Champs and I want to wish all the Scottish athletes competing in Oregon, Birmingham and Munich good luck.

We are proud of each and every one of you and look forward to watching you represent your country!

Finally, not only will we see our athletes in action in Birmingham over the summer. There will also be 18 Scottish Officials on duty, chosen for the great honour of officiating at a Commonwealth Games.

This is fantastic recognition of the level of Officials that we have in Scotland and of the great work that all Officials do week in, week out to make the sport happen. Thanks to you all.

Have a great summer and I look forward to catching up with you at our events.

Tags: Colin Hutchison

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