Brown hails Brownlee brothers

28 February 2012 / 13:14

Malcolm Brown laughs as he considers the prospect of his two proteges, Alistair and Jonny Brownlee, crossing the line together to win the Olympic triathlon.

It is not entirely fanciful given the brothers are the best athletes in their sport in the world and have finished first and second in some of the biggest races, but Brown is adamant.

"There's no chance," he says. "I can't recall them crossing the line together in anything that mattered.

"Winning Olympic gold you only get one chance in most cases, so I don't think they would want to do that."

Brown, a former endurance running coach for UK Athletics and the current Olympic Performance Manager for British Triathlon, first began to work with the pair eight years ago when he was asked by Alistair's father Dr Keith Brownlee to help the teenager with his speed work.

The athletes left in the now 23-year-old's wake may find it hard to believe he ever lacked speed, with Brownlee a double world champion and the hot favourite for Olympic gold on home soil in August.

Assessing his first impressions of the brothers, Brown, who ranks them as among the best distance runners in Britain, said: "I don't think you can ever know the limits of an individual.

"Coaches can say that they know but what I've discovered over many years of coaching is the potential is usually far higher than anybody would expect from any one individual if they are able to apply themselves and are intelligent about it.

"So I probably thought they could be the best in Britain, but I wouldn't have said that at that stage.

"They've shown that they can do the training, are committed, are intelligent and they've done it."

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2012, All Rights Reserved.