RPMF Grant Awards 2023

The Ron Pickering Memorial Fund is pleased to announce that it is awarding 189 Grants to young athletes this year, with a total awarded of just under £40,000. In the more that 30 years since the death of the renowned Coach and Commentator in February of 1991, the RPMF has been able to support thousands of young athletes with Grants totaling almost £2.5 million. 

Coming out of the 3 years of the Global Covid Pandemic and facing the realities of the cost of living increase has had a major impact on our Fundraising activities over the past years, but has also put pressure on athletes and their families looking for support at these times.

It was only because of the support that we have had from Hugh Brasher and his team at London Marathon Events, and incredible efforts of our “Ronners” running in the 2022 London Marathon in October, after a few years of virtual and other events that we are able to offer so many RPMF Grants this year.

Among the grant recipients this year were a number of young athletes that made a major step forwards in 2022, and included 2 of the 3 recent recipients of the Jean Pickering Young Athlete of the Year awards at the recent England Athletics Hall of Fame and Awards Dinner.  U23 Athlete of the Year, Jeremiah Azu, who won an exciting UK Title in the 100m, but missed our on selection for the World Championships in Eugene, is certainly one to watch in 2023.  Also U18 Athlete of the Year, Cleo Agyepong, who won the 2022 European U18 Championships in Jerusalem in the Shot Put.

Unfortunately, due to current NCAA Regulations which prevents even a Charity such as RPMF a financial award to any athlete competing at an American University, we were unable to award a Grant to a very deserving applicant in U20 Jean Pickering Young Athlete of the Year, Yemi Mary John.

Among other deserving recipients we have been able to support Multi-Eventer Holly Mills for another year, who was so close to a medal at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade, and another European Under 18 Champion, Mia McIntosh, in 100m Hurdles.

This year it is pleasing for us to see 18 awards to athletes with a disability, approaching 10% of the total awards, including grants to profoundly Deaf athlete Charlotte Payne, who competed at the European Championships in Munich, T38 Sprinter Alexander Thomson and T20 Middle Distance runner Ben Sandilands and F20 Thrower Fabio Zamparelli.

With 52% of awards to male athletes and 48% to female recipients, and with 34% of the recipients aged 17 or under, a further 26% aged 18-19 years with the remaining 40% to athletes aged 20yrs or over, there was good distribution across both age and sex.

Distribution among events groups was:

Sprints:                   21 %

Hurdles:                  7.5 %

Middle Distance:     17.5 %

Long Distance:        14 %

Jumps:                   16.5 %

Throws:                  15.5 %

Multi-Events:             8 %

With good distribution around the country and almost 100 clubs with athletes receiving 2023 RPMF Grants, the highest number of awards went to members of Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers with 9 recipients, including Henry McLuckie, Marli Jessop and Emmanuel Duruiheoma .

They were closely followed by Blackheath and Bromley AC with 8 recipients including Sprinter Jeriel Quainoo and a very strong group of female Throwers: Bekah Walton, Divine Oladipo, Zara Obamakinwa and Cleo Agyepong. 

You can find the full list of the 2023 grants recipients here.