NLAA
Hall of Fame

Ray Will

Category: Athlete
Inducted: Thursday, July 16, 2009

In addition to establishing himself as a tremendous runner, Ray Will has played an extremely prominent and valuable role in coaching runners since he arrived in Newfoundland and Labrador in 1977. His exceptional knowledge and experience, supported by a determination to simply improve athletes whom he coached, has gained him universal respect and gratitude within the athletic community.

He simply knows what he is talking about and he demonstrated his running ability with an impressive record of achievements.

During his first year of competition provincially he had established records for 10,000 meters and the marathon and for over 40 years 500 meters, 1,500 meters, 3,000 meters and 5,000 meters and was Canada’s top “masters” runner for 1978. He was Canada’s best in 5,000 and 10,000 meters at the World Masters Athletics Championships in Germany. The next year he was provincial track and field athlete of the year, setting a provincial marathon record that still stands.

In 1980 he moved well into coaching being responsible for Memorial University’s male and female cross-country teams. The men’s team won three AUS titles in five years and two runners were selected for the national team for the world championships. During the next few years he coached several athletes who earned national team selections and national medals.

His impressive coaching successes did not go unnoticed. In 1982 he was a member of the coaching staff for the national cross-country team at the World Championships in Rome and at the World Student Games in Germany. He continued coaching for Canada in Great Britain, Japan and Greece during the next five years and was an observer coach at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.

Up to the present time, he continues to contribute to athletics coaching at the national and provincial levels as he has earned a reputation as an extremely knowledgeable and respected coach.