Games in his sights

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By KRIS DANDO

Scott Thom­son has made the jump from New Zealand cham­pion to Ocea­nia cham­pion, lit­er­ally.

The 19-year-old triple-jumper from Whitby was one of just 12 Kiwi ath­letes that at­tended the Ocea­nia Re­gional Cham­pi­onships, held from June 21 to 23 in Samoa. He blitzed the field to take home the gold medal, al­though his win­ning dis­tance of 14.39 me­ters was well down on his per­sonal best of 14.72m.

‘‘I was com­ing out of a New Zealand win­ter and it was hot in Samoa, not hu­mid but still 30 de­grees. It was my first over­seas competition, so a new ex­pe­ri­ence for me, and I was su­per stoked to win.’’

What made his achieve­ment more spe­cial was he did it on his birth­day.

The 2010 na­tional sec­ondary schools cham­pion came sec­ond at the na­tional champs in Dunedin ear­lier this year and is fo­cused on tak­ing over the num­ber one spot. His ar­chi­tec­ture stud­ies in his first year at Vic­to­ria Univer­sity test his time man­age­ment skills, but the A-grade stu­dent would dearly love to rep­re­sent his coun­try at Com­mon­wealth Games or Olympic level.

‘‘I’m get­ting there but there’s a long way to go – you’re prob­a­bly look­ing at 17 me­tres as the mark I have to get to. I’ll keep push­ing the bound­aries though, train­ing hard and what I need is more competition like at the Ocea­nia level.’’

One of the dif­fi­cult as­pects of be­ing a se­nior triple-jumper these days is not hav­ing the high num­ber of sec­ondary school events he could at­tend in his Aotea Col­lege days. This win­ter will see Thom­son do­ing a lot of run­ning, fit­ness work and weight train­ing as he builds to­wards the new sea­son.

At the height of sum­mer, he will be train­ing six days a week and com­pet­ing both days in the week­end. Thom­son is also a keen high­jumper, hold­ing the Aotea Col­lege record, but triple-jump will al­ways take prece­dence.

The Mana Ath­let­ics Club mem­ber has been do­ing ath­let­ics since he was five but only triple­jump­ing touch, vol­ley­ball and cricket since he was 12.

The event is a fam­ily af­fair for the Thom­sons, with dad Richard Scott’s coach, while sis­ter Anna also com­petes.

Lucky shoes: Scott Thom­son’s spiked track shoes will be get­ting plenty of wear and tear in the com­ing months as the Whitby teenager looks to build on his suc­cess­ful Ocea­nia cham­pi­onships.

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