Brendan’s athletics career, saw him amass an impressive array of championship medals: Commonwealth Games 1500m Bronze (1970), 5000m Silver (1974 and 1978), 10,000m Gold (1978); European Championships 1500m Bronze (1971), 5000m Gold (1974) and Olympic Games 10,000m Bronze (1976). Brendan Foster also set two world records for the 3000m in 1972 and 1974; and a world record for two miles in 1973. During his career he was the UK record holder at five different distances, before retiring in 1980.
The following year Brendan Foster joined Nike International Ltd, as their UK Managing Director; and went on to become European Managing Director, Vice President Marketing (Worldwide) and Vice President of Nike Europe, based in the USA.
In 1987 Brendan set up his own company Nova International, a sports marketing agency; specialising in the organisation of mass participation sporting events for TV, where he remains Chairman and Managing Director. The company has branched out to include a production arm, Film NOVA and a sportswear division, View From.
Great North Run
Since his retirement from athletics, Brendan Foster has continued his involvement with the sport. In 1981 he founded The Great North Run; the UK’s biggest road race, attracting over 50,000 runners annually.
He is a senior member of the BBC athletics commentary team and has covered almost every Olympic Games, World Championships and Commonwealth Games since the 1980s. Even his spare time is taken up by his enthusiasm for sport, in particular supporting Newcastle United.
Brendan Foster was awarded the MBE in 1976, with the CBE following in 2008. He had the honour of being inducted into the England Athletics Hall of Fame in 2010.
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Matthew Willetts MA is the Director of Comicus who has over 35 years experience in television, film, theatre, and comedy club/cabaret entertainment, working as a performer, screenwriter, producer and agent. He lectured at Southampton Solent University in Comedy, Screenwriting, Television, Theatre & Radio. Matthew can sometimes be seen and heard on TV & Radio and often quoted in the national press and media publications. As well as speaking regularly at festivals and industry conferences, he has been a judge at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Montreux Television Festival.
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