Suzanne Benyon was a brilliant athlete who won many
track, road and cross country races and
competed regularly for Scotland at a wide range of distances and disciplines.
Suzanne ran for City of Stoke AC from 1997 to 2003. During this time she competed
mainly on the track over 800m to 5000m, achieving national rankings
in every distance. She was North Staffs Cross Country champion in 1999.
Suzanne also competed for Staffordshire University from 2000-2002, achieving silver medals
both indoors and outdoors at the BUSA championships over
3000m and 5000m respectively. In early 2003 Suzanne became Scottish Indoor
3000m champion and Birmingham Indoor Games 3000m Champion.
After 2003 Suzanne moved on to City of Glasgow to increase her opportunities for competing for Scotland, which she did on many occasions on track, road and
Suzanne was a
fantastic team athlete, often competing over different distances at the same
meeting for City of Stoke,
memorably achieving two personal bests in one day over 800m (2:12) and 1500m (4:26).
Her best for 3000m was also a club record
This commitment was to be a constant factor during her athletics career,
competing in two events at every fixture during City of Glasgow's successful
2006 promotion campaign from Division 2 to Division 1 of the UK Women's league.
From 1997 until this year Suzanne was coached by former National Endurance
Harry Harvey. Suzanne and Harry had a very strong coach/athlete relationship,
becoming close friends. Virtually every week on a Tuesday and Thursday night
come rain or
shine, you would
see her running around the Northwood athletics track in Stoke with Harry on the sidelines
encouraging her on.
During this time Suzanne had many different training partners of the highest quality, male and female,
and all knew that training
with Suzanne would mean a (very) hard session! However, even though Suzanne had a fiercely competitive streak
when running, she was never short of encouragement for her
fellow athletes, and would make any new arrivals immediately feel welcome and a part of the
Suzanne was a committed vegan, meaning that she did not eat any animal
product (meat, dairy or eggs). She wanted to show that animal produce was
unnecessary even when competing at international level. She proved this by
becoming Scottish 5000m Champion in August 2006, as well
as winning the West District of Scotland XC title in 2005. Suzanne continued to
improve and achieved a 5000m personal best of 16:50 at a Solihull British Milers
Club meeting this
Suzanne finishes 4th in the Scottish National
Cross Country 2005
Suzanne and City of Glasgow team-mates win
bronze medals at the 2005 National Road relays
Suzanne and Tofu - September 2006
It is testament to Suzanne's popularity that more
than 300 mourners, family, friends, colleagues and
competitors alike stood side by side at Bradwell Crematorium on 7th
November 2006 to pay tribute to a very special person.
Suzanne's husband Peter, Mum and Dad Sandra and Dave,
and brother Stewart would like to offer a sincere thank you to all who showed
how much Suzanne meant, and means to them.
Suzanne will always be remembered for
her tremendous smile and endless enthusiasm. She will continue to be an
inspiration as an athlete and as a person to everybody who knew her.
Whenever you are on the limit and you ask yourself whether you
can carry on, remember Suzanne's, personality, determination and
never give up attitude, and she will carry you
Peter Benyon & John Danahay - November 2006