Like fa­ther, like son

The Oban Times - - Sport -

A YOUNG ath­lete from Fort Wil­liam is fol­low­ing in dad’s foot­steps af­ter win­ning gold in the un­der 18 race at Snow­don.

Mem­ber of Lochaber ath­letic club, Steven Burns, suc­cess­fully gained first place in the ju­nior sec­tion at the in­ter­na­tion­ally ac­claimed Wales hill race.

The for­mer Lochaber high school pupil also won gold at the north dis­trict track and field cham­pi­onships in In­ver­ness in May of this year and sil­ver in the In­ver­ness half marathon in March.

The 17-year- old said: ‘I got into run­ning when I was about nine years old, but I fell away from it when I was about 12 or 13.

‘I wanted to get back to run­ning and joined the club last July.’

Steven was inspired by dad, also Stephen, who has been a mem­ber of the same club for 25 years, to take up the sport as a young­ster.

The pair work to­gether at Stephen Burns roof­ing in Fort Wil­liam. Young roofer, Steven, said: ‘I’m pro­gress­ing well at track. My dad is my coach. We get on fine even though we work and train to­gether.’

Steven is get­ting set for this year’s Scot­tish Cham­pi­onship road races to be held in Grange­mouth.

He told the Oban Times he aims to shape a ca­reer out of run­ning: ‘The races I am com­pet­ing in are the 5,000 me­tre and 800 me­tre. I’d like to progress to pro­fes­sional track rac­ing and hope to work up to a Great Bri­tain vest.

‘Af­ter tak­ing some years out of track and cross coun­try, it is nice to see that all of my hard work is pay­ing off. Track needs to be con­sis­tent and I have to stay mo­ti­vated.’

Steven likes to set out tar­gets for him­self and for the past 12 months he has man­aged to achieve all of his per­sonal goals.

Dad Stephen, who was also a for­mer ju­nior track cham­pion for Scot­land, said: ‘ He could def­i­nitely run for Scot­land, but it is a grad­ual pro­gres­sion. De­spite Fort Wil­liam be­ing known for hill rac­ing, that is not what Steven will con­cen­trate on. There are more op­por­tu­ni­ties in track and field.’

HARD WORK: Steven tak­ing part in the track and field event in

In­ver­ness in May.

GOLDEN BOY: Steven af­ter re­ceiv­ing his gold medal in

Snow­don last month

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