AAA Indoor Championships

The AAA Indoor Championships was an annual indoor track and field competition organised by the Amateur Athletic Association of England. It was the foremost indoor domestic athletics event during its lifetime.[1][2]

AAA Indoor Championships
Athletics pictogram.svg
SportIndoor track and field
Founded1935
Ceased2006
CountryEngland/United Kingdom

The event was first held in 1935, following the construction of an adequate venue in Wembley Arena in London for the 1934 British Empire Games. The first iteration of the competition lasted for five editions and featured around nine men's indoor track and field events and six for women. The onset of World War II meant the competition was not held in 1940. The second iteration of the competition began in 1962, returning to its Wembley venue. The championships had a long residency at RAF Cosford indoor arena from 1965 to 1991, then from 1992 to 2001 at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham. The final few editions for held at the English Institute of Sport, Sheffield.[3] The event ceased in 2006, being replaced by the UK Athletics-organised British Indoor Athletics Championships.

Though organised by the English governing body, it was open to all athletes from the United Kingdom, and also to overseas athletes. (Most of the foreign athletes who competed were Irish or UK-based.) It served as the de facto British Championships, given the absence of such a competition during its history. It was typically held over two days over a weekend in February.

It was among the earliest and most significant annual indoor track and field competitions, being preceded only by the AAU Indoor Track and Field Championships in the United States (established in 1907). The restarting of the AAA Indoor Championships in 1962 came alongside similar national developments elsewhere, including the German Indoor Championships in 1954 and Soviet Indoors in 1964.[4][5] The European Athletics Indoor Championships became the first regular indoor international championship in 1966.[6]

EventsEdit

The following athletics events featured as standard on the main AAA Championships programme:

  • Sprint: 60 m, 200 m, 400 m
  • Distance track events: 800 m, 1500 m, 3000 m
  • Hurdles: 60 m hurdles
  • Jumps: long jump, triple jump, high jump, pole vault
  • Throws: shot put

Events were initially raced and measured in imperial distances, with the transition to metric occurring in 1968 for men and 1969 for women. A men's 2000 metres steeplechase was contested from 1967 to 1985. Combined track and field events were introduced in 1987 in the form of a men's octathlon and a women's pentathlon; the octathlon was amended to the international standard men's heptathlon in 1991. Racewalking briefly featured on the programme, with a men's and women's 3000 metres track walk happening from 1997 to 2002. A women's 1.5 mile walk was also held in 1966 and 1967. and a men's 1-mile walk in 1936. The non-standard 600-yard run was held for both men and women from 1962 to 1964.

In line with the international expansion of women's athletics programmes to match the men's, the 3000 metres for women was added in 1973, the triple jump was added in 1991 and the pole vault in 1994.

EditionsEdit

# Year Date Venue Location Notes
1935 Wembley Arena London
1936 Wembley Arena London
1937 Wembley Arena London
1938 Wembley Arena London
1939 Wembley Arena London
Not held 1940 to 1945 due to World War II
1962 Wembley Arena London
1963 Wembley Arena London
1964 Wembley Arena London
1965 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1966 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1967 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1968 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1969 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1970 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1971 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1972 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1973 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1974 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1975 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1976 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1977 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1978 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1979 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1980 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1981 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1982 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1983 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1984 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1985 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1986 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1987 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1988 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1989 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1990 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1991 Cosford Indoor Area RAF Cosford
1992 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
1993 National Indoor Arena Birmingham Heptathlon and pentathlon held at RAF Cosford
1994 National Indoor Arena Birmingham Heptathlon and pentathlon held at RAF Cosford
1995 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
1996 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
1997 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
1998 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
1999 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
2000 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
2001 National Indoor Arena Birmingham
2002 2–3 February[7] National Indoor Athletics Centre Cardiff
2003 National Indoor Arena Birmingham Heptathlon and pentathlon held at NIAC Cardiff
2004 11–12 February[8] English Institute of Sport Sheffield Heptathlon and pentathlon held at NIAC Cardiff
2005 English Institute of Sport Sheffield Heptathlon and pentathlon held at NIAC Cardiff
2006 7–8 February[9] English Institute of Sport Sheffield

Most successful athletes by eventEdit

Event Men Men's titles Women Women's titles
60 metres Jason Gardener 5 Beverly Kinch 5
200 metres Linford Christie 6   Ciara Sheehy (IRL) 3
400 metres Jim Aukett 4 Verona Elder 8
800 metres Martin Steele 4 Kirsty Wade 4
1500 metres Walter Wilkinson
Rob Harrison
2 Mary Stewart
Hayley Ovens
3
3000 metres Ian Stewart
Ray Smedley
3 Mary Stewart
Thelwyn Bateman
Sonia McGeorge
Angela Davies
Zara Hyde Peters
Jo Pavey
2
60 m hurdles Colin Jackson 7 Lorna Boothe
Lesley-Ann Skeete
4
2000 m steeplechase Ron McAndrew 4 Not contested
High jump Geoff Parsons 5 Susan Moncrieff 7
Pole vault Mike Bull 8 Janine Whitlock 7
Long jump Chris Tomlinson 4 Sheila Parkin
Sue Reeve
Kim Hagger
Denise Lewis
Joanne Wise
3
Triple jump Aston Moore
Francis Agyepong
Julian Golley
4 Michelle Griffith 5
Shot put Geoff Capes
Mike Winch
Paul Edwards
6 Judy Oakes 18
Heptathlon/pentathlon John Heanley 3 Kelly Sotherton 3
3000 m walk   Robert Heffernan (IRL) 3   Gillian O'Sullivan (IRL) 3

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ AAA Indoor Championships (Men). GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2020-01-29.
  2. ^ AAA Indoor Championships (Women). GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2020-01-29.
  3. ^ Knight, Tom (2004-02-06). Britain's indoor revolution. Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  4. ^ Soviet Indoor Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  5. ^ German Indoor Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  6. ^ European Indoor Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  7. ^ Turnbull, Simon (2000-02-03). Athletics: Spencer steps into limelight. The Independent. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  8. ^ 2004 AAA Indoor Championships Complete Results. Power of 10. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  9. ^ 2006 AAA Indoor Championships Complete Results. Power of 10. Retrieved 2018-03-10.