Powys athletics is on the right track

Reporter:

Gavin Grosvenor

POWYS has underlined its credentials as a breeding ground of future athletics talent.

While Welshpool shot putter Adele Nicoll was setting a new personal best of 16.09m and claiming a gold medal in the Welsh Indoor international against England, Llanidloes track star Lauren Williams captained the Welsh side while also claiming a bronze medal in the women’s under 20s 400m.

Meanwhile the future looks bright with the next generation of track and field stars completing a boys and girls double at under 13s level at the Welsh Sportshall Finals in Cwmbran.

Nicoll had little time to celebrate having linked up with the British squad for the European Throwing Cup in Gran Canaria after the event.

Nicoll said: “I was just guesting at the international as it was an under 20 and under 18 competition and of course because I'm 20 I'm actually under 23s.

“However I’m very happy with the PB and has set me up nicely for this weekend. I'm looking forward to putting on that GB vest again and doing what I do best, compete. 

“I'm already way ahead of where I was this time last year in terms of distance so I'm excited for what's to come in 2017.”

Meanwhile Llanidloes based Swansea Harrier, Williams underlined her growing reputation by captaining her country.

“I am very happy to end my indoor season with a third place finish at the international,” said Williams. “It's given me a lot of confidence leading up to the outdoor season and things are looking promising for the 400m hurdles.

“It was an honour to captain such a strong Welsh team and I am extremely proud of how everyone performed, with an impressive total of eight medals and 13 PBs.

“I would like to thank the coaches at Maldwyn Harriers as well as SportsAid, CGI and sport Powys for their continued support, it really does make all the difference.”

Meanwhile a string squad of emerging track and field athletes from Powys headed to Cwmbran for the Welsh finals of the UK Sportshall Finals last weekend.

While the under 15s girls squad ended third and the under 15s boys claimed second the under 13s sides both won their respective age grades and will now represent Wales in the British Finals at Sport City in Manchester on Sunday, April 23.

To cap a memorable day, Llanfair Caereinion’s Ellen Jones was crowned individual all round Welsh champion.

Powys under 13s girls edged glory by a solitary point from Afan Nedd Tawe with their 593 points over 12 disciplines while the boys prevailed triumphant with 617 points after seeing off North West Wales.

Community sport development officer for Llanfair Caereinion and Llanfyllin, Rhys Stephens said: “All the pupils performed and behaved brilliantly.

“For two of our sides to win is a great achievement and for all of the region’s representative squads to make the top three in their age group is also a fantastic achievement.”

“The high schools across the county deserve a lot of credit for this success, regional sportshall tournaments are held between North and South Powys and helped ensure the all Powys squad was made up of the best from the region.

“The schools have worked hard to support these young athletes and it is a great achievement for Powys.”

See full story in the County Times

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