Englishman Turner wins plaudits in Finland

By Matthew Brown
Chris Turner, the treasurer of the British Athletics Writers’ Association, was last night named as the winner of the Finnish athletics federation’s media award for 2006, the first non-Finnish winner in the award’s 49 years.

SJA member Turner is based in Monte Carlo where he edits the website of the athletics world governing body, the IAAF.

He has been a fan of Finnish athletics since he was too young to know any better, drawn to it by the exploits of Lasse Viren, the legend of Paavo Nurmi (pictured right) and other Flying Finns, and the country’s love affair with javelin throwing. He once said he supported Finnish athletics in the way some people support their football team. He’s a fanatic, in other words.

He’s also a journalist, of course, and has written a number of books about his passion, notably Flying and Throwing: A review of Finnish track and field 1906 to 2005, and The Finnish Mafia: The history of Finnish javelin throwing 1906 to 2005, extracts of which can be found on the Finnish federation’s website.

Turner was named for the 2006 honour along with Jarmo Färdig, and received the award – given for overall influence on Finnish athletics – from the SUL (Suomen Urheilulitto) at a special awards function in Helsinki.

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