Our Coaches

Coach - Johnny Wray

Johnny started running at an early age and was competing in cross country events by the age of 10. His passion as a teenager was football and he transferred his running skills to this sport for many years.  After hanging up his football boots he decided to take up running again and joined the Striders with a view to keeping fit. Regaining his love for running along with his fun, enthusiastic and positive attitude to help and encourage others, motivated him to take on a coaching role at the club.

Johnny completed the Larne Half marathon in 1 hour 48 minutes and has completed numerous 10k events. He enjoys Saturday Parkruns chasing hot on the heels of the front runners. Currently his PB stands at 20.22. His competitive nature drives him forward and he often encourages this to motivate at weekly training sessions.

A regular at Friday night and Sunday morning runs, Johnny encourages all abilities and encompasses the group running, supporting and motivating people to succeed with their own goals.

Since completing his Leadership in Running Fitness Qualification Johnny strives to bring fun, variety and new ideas to his sessions and even a bit of singing!!

Coach - Michael Honeyman

Michael started running in 1985 with random 5/10kms, as he developed he cut his ‘endurance’ running teeth in the Fleet & Croockham ½ marathon achieving a time of 1:38. He came 3rd in his class whilst competing in the Bataan Death March marathon across White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. He has completed 6 Belfast marathons with a best time of 3:38. Michael enjoys endurance events completing 3 Rathlin Island 10.6 mile runs, 3 Larne and 4 Newtownards 1/2 marathons. Most recently, he completed the Equinox 24hr challenge completing 50km

Qualifying as a Gym Instructor in 2006, Michael went on to qualify as a Personal Trainer in 2007 and branch out with his own PT business until 2014. He joined the #Striders in August 2016 entrenching himself as a regular and enthusiastic member. He focusses his support across every member of the club and can be seen/heard constantly encouraging our runners.

Coach - Hannah Robinson

Hannah started running in 2014 with the first session of C25K, graduating in May 2014 running her first parkrun in a time of 40:39. Since graduating she completed her coaching qualification and continues to support 100's of people through the successful C25K progamme.

An inspiration to many, Hannah completed her first 10K race in March 2015 in 1:08:45. In April 2016 she ran Queens 5K in a time of 28:37 over 12 minutes faster than her first 5k! With the support and encouragement of many running friends and family Hannah went on to complete the Larne, Belfast and Newry Half Marathons, before she took on and completed the London Marathon in April 2016. Couch to Marathon - what an amazing achievement!

For those that don't know Hannah, she loves her whistle and regularly opens our training sessions, before helping where needed in the background (with her camera!). We are honoured that Hannah accepted the role as our club Chairperson and feel she is the best person to promote our all 'inclusive' club ethos, provide lots of inspiration and keep things interesting and fun.

Coach - Loraine McCrum

Loraine has been running since she was 18 but usually alone, however since she joined Scrabo Striders her running abilities have gone from strength to strength, this is mainly due to the extra training that she does with the club, and weekend runs on Fridays and Sundays. Loraine has completed many running events with Scrabo Striders from Park Runs, Bangor Aurora 10K, Jimmys 10K, Larne Half Marathon to name a few. Over the next few months Loraine will be taking part in Comber 10K, Lisburn and Ards half marathons, Ards 5 mile challenge, Donaghadee 5K, Bangor 10K and many more in between.

February 2017 saw Loraine complete her LIRF(Leadership in Running & Fitness) course, she believes this qualification has prepared her even more to encourage, be supportive and understand the personal development of the group she is coaching. This new found knowledge means her delivery and execution of each session is of the highest of standards incorporating health and safety followed by a well planned and beneficial session.

You can usually spot Loraine at the club, whether she is marshalling or taking a training sessions she's the one wearing the Hi Viz jacket, has red hair, and will be shouting lots or encouragement whilst having great fun in the process.

Coach - Aaron Bell

Aaron has a talent for bringing out the competitive side of our members and helping us to get the most out of our training sessions. He has worked in the fitness industry for nearly 20 years, holding qualifications in Personal Training and Swimming Coaching. He is passionate about helping people achieve their fitness goals and is excited about the opportunity to encourage local runners.

Aaron started running in 2003, completing his first marathon in Belfast in the same year. Since then he has completed marathons in Paris, Austria & Dublin where he achieved the qualifying time to enter the Boston Marathon which he completed the following year. Although, Running is not Aaron's only passion, he also enjoys competing in triathlons, aquathons and open water swims. In 2007, he undertook his biggest challenge yet, completing the Austrian Ironman, a triathlon consisting of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 cycle followed by a marathon. Wow!

Aaron's achievements have inspiried many of his family to get involved in running and we regularly see them at training. With a young family he now prefers to run at local Parkruns and 10ks whilst continuing to inspire so many people and we are delighted to have him on our coaching team.

Coach - Megan Adams

Megan is a graduate of the initial Comber couch 25k group in 2014. Since then, she has enjoyed running parkrun and currently holds a PB of 25:45. Megan has participated in 5K and 10K races, and completed her first half marathon at Larne, in March 2017.

Having recently completed her Lirf course, Megan is keen to get involved in the club training sessions and help other runners, whatever their ability, become better! She also assists with our Junior coaching sessions and will complete her junior coaching course in September.

Coach - Phillippa Wilson

Phillippa returned to running after a (very) long hiatus in 2012. For a long time she had been one of those who had used the “not built for running” as an excuse, but soon discovered that runners come in all shapes and sizes, and that she really enjoyed it.

In 2012 she completed Bangor 10k in 59:57, and in 2013 managed to drop over 7 minutes to 52:32, and has been improving ever since. Phillippa has run Groomsport, Belfast and Larne Half Marathons, as well as completing Belfast Marathon in 2016.

Since Phillippa has completed her coaching qualification, she has run a Desk to 5k session in her work, as she firmly believes that running is the best way to clear your mind, and is very enthusiastic about encouraging people to get up and running. Phillippa also helps out at Bangor Swimming Club and Bangor Bluefins Special Olympics Aquatics Club.

Coach - Norman Mawhinney

For those who don’t know Norman he can be recognised by always wearing shorts, having a thumbs up pose in any race picture (he's not camera shy!) and shouting words of support “super, fantastic, arms swinging”. A fantastic coach who is so supportive of all the members, Norman is a massive credit to the running community and we're so honoured to have him as our coach.

Norman started running over 7 years ago and has lost an incredible 5 stone! He continues to push himself and achieve amazing results, regularly placing top of his age category. In 2015 Norman ran a sub 3 hour marathon time in Berlin Marathon in 2:59:14 and a month later he ran Dublin Marathon in 3:01:14 in which he achieved top Irish Marathon Runner in his category.

Be aware...Norman's passion and enthusiasm for running is infectious and spreading across the Ards and North Down community.  As well as starting up and growing the highly successful C25K sessions in Comber, Newtownards, Bangor, Holywood, Dundonald and Portaferry, Norman also setup and co-ordinates Comber Park Run. His current Park Run PB stands at 18:09! He was also instrumental in setting up our club and other running clubs around the peninsula.

Coach - Graeme McGowan

Graeme has been running since completing his first Ards Half Marathon in July 2008. It was a struggle to complete but he made it and that was him hooked. He continued on to complete the full pure running half marathon series in 2009 along with Dublin and Belfast marathon.

Graeme hasn't looked back and continues to participate in the pure running half marathon series, motivating many Scrabo Strider members to give it a go. A great motivator within our club, he believes anyone can run if you can find the time to train. Graeme can also be found at the square on a Sunday morning, rain, hail or shine for a long run.