Alastair Aitken
Alastair Aitken
Alastair Aitken's
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James Shane with his Coach Martin Brown JUNE 2010

Newham & Essex Beagles middle distance runner JAMES SHANE, now 20, could be the Next Olympic middle distance hope for the UK, judging by what I saw at the London Inter-club Challenge and BMC races.
Those were held at Ashton Playing fields, Woodford, on the 19th of June in gale force winds and in unusually cool weather for the time of year.
Shane went with his coach MARTIN BROWN to purely do a training 400m race for his 800/1500. He was in the inside lane and had a standing start, as though he was going to run a middle distance event. He came away with a 50.2 electrical and 50.1 hand timed. (His PB in 2008 was 48.6 in 2008)
Then an hour or so later he went in as a pacemaker for four consecutive BMC events, Two 800's and two 1500's. Even the timekeepers were surprised when he strode away from the field on every occasion, before he dropped out at his allotted spot that was organised by Pat Fitzgerald of the BMC.
   To add to this I was up at Sutton, Birmingham for the National Road relay in April and saw Shane take Newham & Essex Beagles into the lead on the fourth leg and then, a week later, he won the BMC 800 at Hendon in 1:50.43. That showed great diversification " I was not surprised' he said ' I knew I was in good shape and always been able to do over or under distance work so, I am not in bad shape all the year round. It is just a matter of sharpening up to run sub 1.50'
   However he did admit ' I don't like cross country. I enter cross country races. I use it for a bit of training and distance work. I enter cross country races  rather than go for a long run.'
   This year, at the time of writing he has beaten notable names, all in one race. In the British League 1500, on  the 5th of June at Hendon, he won the 1500 in 3:48.74 ahead of Paskar Owor, Nick Goolab, Moumin Geele, Ronnie Sparke and Richard Goodman. He ran a personal best 800 of 1:47.99 at Watford, on the 12th of June but declared ' I prefer to win Championships races rather than run a time.'
   As The Power of 10' shows that, at his age of 20 (Born 18 December 1989) he has already won 135 races. He has run 3000 in  8:11. 78 &  5000 in 14:48.7. One result that pleased him this year was winning the BUCS Championships at Bedford over 1500 in 3:50.50.
   He currently lives at home and is studying to be a teacher at Anglia Ruskin University.How then did it all begin for James Shane
   'I first started running when I was 10 or 11 as I was just moving out of primary school. My older brother DAN SHANE liked it. I just decided to do it because my brother did it basically that was it. I did every sport football, cricket, basketball, judo, running and everything'
He added 'To be honest I didn't start running to get somewhere. I just enjoyed it, had a good laugh with my good friends down Basildon. There were loads of us at my age at the time all having a good laugh'
   Martin Brown comes in here " 20 of them, all getting to county level pretty much. It was quite light hearted but they did some proper training'
   James Shane then came in again pointing to the first important races for him ' The first proper race was the top year Under 15 .I was 3rd in the Southern Junior (4:16.91) and beat them all in the Schools' (4:07.15).
   Martin Brown:- ' After the Southern he did not lose a race for 2 years at any track distance!'
    Did James Shane look up to any athletes that inspired him ' Very difficult to say. The British one's did but I did not appreciate the likes of Coe, Ovett and Cram running but the first person I saw winning his races on television was Haile Gebrsselassie.'
  He continued 'Of the 800m men around today Kaki and Rudisha are outstanding. Those two lead but there is a whole lot of other people altogether, just behind that and I am not too far behind. Within a few years I would hope to be well established in that band.'
   His coach Martin Brown has made a study of the principles that got Coe, Ovett, Cram and Elliott to the top and looks at those as good examples. He has been coaching for 12 years and has advised James for over six years.
   " We have a plan since then to get him up to the Olympics in his mid 20's . He is slightly behind the target  because we did not get where we wanted to last year but you have got to have one year like that and now it is sorted'
   What is James Shane's biggest plus then " He always goes out to win'

Alastair Aitken

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