Speed Demon Coaching


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Coaches Educated 2000+

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Athletes Coached" 100+

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State, National & Professional Podiums 30+

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YEARS Experience

Dr Andrew Dawson –
Founder & Head Coach of Speed Demon Coaching

Dr Andrew Dawson has more than 30 years’ experience coaching individuals and groups to enhance their performance in areas including sport, health, fitness, career development, as well as academic and life skills. Andrew has a Bachelor of Applied Science (BAppSci) in Physical Education and Coaching, a Master of Applied Science (MAppSci) in Sport Psychology and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in coach development. Andrew is an expert in coach education and development and has been a university academic and researcher with 40+ peer-reviewed and 50+ industry and media publications related to sport science and coaching (see Andrew’s Google Scholar Profile).

Andrew also has extensive leadership and senior management experience in the university and sport sectors having served as the Director of Learning and Teaching for the College of Sport and Exercise Science, Course Director of the Bachelor of Sport Science at Victoria University. During his tenure at both Deakin University and Victoria university Andrew has won numerous awards for his coach education and development work and when he’s not coaching Andrew also acts as a long-term coach development policy and management consultant to several international, national and state sport organisations.

To find out more about Andrew academic and professional career, here’s his LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/andrew-dawson-phd-8995b11/

Photo of Speed Demon Head Coach Andrew Dawson and Student

Athletic background

During the 1980’ to early 2000’s Andrew competed as a sprinter in school competitions (APS – Caulfield Grammar 1981-1982; Erindale College, ACT All Schools U19 100m & 200m champion 1983); club competitions Eureka AC – Ballarat (1984-86) Box Hill AC (1987-88) Ballarat YCW 1989-1990; state competitions (Athletics Victoria – State League & State Championships) and national championships (1985). Andrew achieved a personal best of 10.6 (HT) for the 100m and 21.6 (HT) for the 200m. After a long layoff due to a back injury  sustained from being a fast bowler in cricket Andrew returned to sprinting as a masters athlete from 1997-2005. Andrew also had a go at running professionally competing at several regional Victorian Athletic League meets and the Stawell Gift in the 2001-2002 season. Andrew retired from competition following a ruptured Achilles tendon in 2005.

Athletics Coaching background

With more than 40 years’ experience as a coach Andrew’s coaching philosophy is informed by sport science, history, philosophy, psychology, sociology and best practice where he endeavours to continually create a learning environment for his athletes so they can develop and thrive. In doing so, they get the opportunity to challenge themselves to be the best they can be in sport and in life.

Andrew is a Level 4 World Athletics accredited high-performance coach based at the Collingwood Harriers Athletics Club in Melbourne, Australia where he trains sprinters of all ages and levels of participation (from school and community/club levels to high performance athletes competing at state, national and professional championships). Andrew has also coached athletes from a range of sports in speed development as well as strength and power development.

Since returning to athletics coaching in 2016 at the Collingwood Harriers Athletic club Andrew has coaches several state individual and relay champions who have gone on to national championship podium places as well as several professional age-group gift champions as well as open age champions and podium places in the Victorian Athletic League events.

Gabriel Zabotto/Gab/Gabe

Athletic background

Gabe started athletics back in 2007, when he was 7 years old, at Collingwood Little Athletics. As the years progressed, he represented Collingwood at many Regional and State tracks meets. Gabe would often find himself in the finals of the 200m and 400m, occasionally performing well enough to earn a medal.

In 2010, Gabe started at Xavier College, and immediately began training and competing with them, although they didn’t have a very competitive environment outside of the junior APS meets.

However, in 2015, when I started year 9, Gabe got a proper taste of the APS division and the talent that other APS schools had to offer. Representing Xavier College at the APS finals from 2015 to 2018 in multiple events, often making the A grade final and placing in a top 4 finish, I found myself improving quite quickly, reaching times as good as 10.97 and 22.9.

After some time off to focus on his university studies, Gabe returned to competition in the 2022/23 VAL season, running in his first ever Stawell gift in 2023. Being his first season back after so many years however, he wasn’t expecting much, but he’s now committed to improving and reaching higher than he ever has before.

Photo of Speed Demon Coaching's Gabriel Zabotto

Coaching background

Gabe is a certified level 1 coach with almost 5 years of experience coaching all kinds of age groups.

Gabe started coaching in 2019 at Xavier College, coaching alongside my old sprint coach Peter Van Miltenburg. This was a great experience, as he learnt not only athletics skills to teach, but he also learnt mannerisms that made coaching easier and skills that his coach used to keep kids engaged the focused in training that he has carried on into his current coaching style. However, after COVID started affecting casual staff, Gabe unfortunately had to leave Xavier, and started coaching back at Collingwood Little Athletics, starting in 2020. Finally, in 2022, Gabe was offered the Coaching Coordinator job at Collingwood Little Athletics and was able to help the club with one of their best performances in recent years, having more state qualifiers and state medallists than in recent years.

Gabe believes that athletes go through multiple stages of development in their athletic careers, some progressing faster than others, and it’s vital to train their technique and running style before moving onto more complicated things such as blocks. This can be done in many ways, through drills, games and demonstrations, horeover, for the younger athletes, it’s very important to keep their interest at the forefront of their training, through use of games and group activities. This can then tie into their athletic development without their knowledge, hence improving their skills and speed in new and fun ways.

Dylan McGann

Athletic background

Dylan was a promising junior sprinter having medalled at state-level competition across various distances before succumbing to chronic injuries. After a few years of general strength training, he resumed competitive sport as a weightlifter, competing at the senior national championships. Dylan returned to sprinting in 2022 and has since been competing in local amateur and professional races with some ‘unfinished business’.

Coaching background

Dylan is an experienced strength and conditioning coach with a history of working with beginner to elite athletes across various sports, including athletics, basketball, boxing, and football. Dylan has a keen interest in sprint biomechanics; in particular how athlete-specific data can be leveraged to assess and monitor performance. Academic at heart having completed both a Bachelor of Science (Honours) with a double major in Biochemistry and Physiology, and a Master of Data Analytics. Dylan bases his principles of sprint coaching on having an athlete’s body synchronised while applying maximum force to the track effectively with maximum efficiency.

Photo of Speed Demon Coaching's Dylan

When you sign up for the Speed Demon Pro Training service you will make an appointment with Dr Andrew Dawson to discuss your training needs and goals and from there you will meet either

Gold package

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Weekly Zoom Meeting

Silver package

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Fortnightly Zoom Meeting

Bronze package

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Monthly Zoom Meeting

to work on enhancing your speed development.

Make an appointment for a FREE 30 minute Performance Profile and Assessment with Dr Andrew Dawson valued at $147 (USD)


Little Speed Demon Program

Fantastic end-to-end course on how to coach your child to run faster. I particularly enjoyed the broad content covering theory & research behind running technique, strength training guidance, drills to improve running technique, and detailed & fun training sessions to put it all into practice!

Father of Maggie aged 11

I think the LITTLE SPEED DEMON coaching course is a great tool for people to learn how to coach individuals to run faster.

Father of Jess aged 12

The LITTLE SPEED DEMON coaching course was so enlightening for learning how to coach as well as speed development tips for our children. The children loved the program and are looking forward to continuing it over the school holidays. The program is designed not only to help children but also the parents (coaches) with their running style. – Thank you Andrew

The Wright family

Hi Andrew, I just wanted to send a quick email to say thank you. My daughter Piper has always dominated middle/long distance events but has never seen success in the shorter distances. A few weeks ago after beginning the LITTLE SPEED DEMON program, Piper won a 70m sprint at Little Athletics. Having done a lot of hard work on her running, she convincingly won her 100m with a PB and beat a competitor she could never pass in the sprints. She is so proud of herself 🙂 Thank you for producing a course that allows us to better our children.

Mother of Piper aged 6

Learning how to coach my kids to run faster has been brilliant!! The SPEED DEMON Coaching program for parents has taught me so much about developing speed & power for lots of different sports.

Father of Ben aged 12

Speed Demon Pro Training

Andrew has been an incredible coach and mentor for my daughter, Chiara. She has won multiple state age-group championships over 100m, 200m and 400m and has won Bronze at the national age-group championships for the Girls U17 200m in 2019. I can’t thank you enough mate…

Lou Santiglia
Father of Chiara

Andrew has helped me run much faster than I ever believed I could . Over two seasons with Andrew I have managed to win several masters sprint titles which has been an unexpected delight. Andrew seems to find the right way to get the best out of you. He knows when and how to push you to work harder and then pull things back so you are prepared for the big meets. Amazing… thanks coach!!

Maria Cahill
Masters athlete

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