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Wharton is sports personality of year

PUBLISHED: 16:17 13 May 2010 | UPDATED: 09:41 01 August 2010

John Wharton gets his award from the mayor.

John Wharton gets his award from the mayor.

JOHN Wharton, caption of the highly successful Bungay Black Dog Running Club for the past 15 years, was named on Friday as this year's Bungay sports personality of the year.

JOHN Wharton, caption of the highly successful Bungay Black Dog Running Club for the past 15 years, was named on Friday as this year's Bungay sports personality of the year.

He received the Bezant Cup and framed certificate which make up the award from the mayor, John Warnes, at the annual civic evening at the community centre.

The nomination said he had been a member of the club for 16 years, and “encourages everyone who comes along regardless of age, sex or capabilities”.

He served on a number of club committees, including the junior committee and “provides every ounce of himself to give to others. He is the man behind our now extremely successful club”.

As well as being a runner himself, John organises club events, attends courses, and worked to achieve his level two coaching status.

“It is a surprise,” he said after receiving the trophy.

“I have been club captain for 15 years. Part of the reason for joining the club was the social side, and that is what Bungay does best - accepting people in,” he said.

“I have got more out of this club than I have put in - it has given me enormous satisfaction,” he added.

He was instrumental in setting up the Great East Run, held in February and now in its 11th year.

He said: “I feel very proud of that, and it involves so many people as well.”

As to his award on Friday, he said: “You get nominated, but you are supported by a huge number of people, willing people.”

In future he hopes to do more coaching of runners, as well as continuing to run himself.

His best time for the half-marathon is one hour 30 minutes - but he has never run a full marathon - and has no plans to do so!

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