Teen on track to com­pete for gold

Broome Advertiser - - Sport - Jakeb Wad­dell

A lo­cal all-round ath­lete will carry the weight of Broome on his shoul­ders when he heads to the na­tional cham­pi­onships next month, where he has his eyes fixed on gold.

Stephen Car­son had a tremen­dous show­ing at the WA State Cham­pi­onships re­cently, leav­ing with four medals around his neck and in­valu­able ex­pe­ri­ence un­der his belt.

The 17-year-old won sil­ver in shot­put, and the 400m and 800m events, as well as a bronze for dis­cus.

His spec­tac­u­lar re­sults qual­i­fied him for the Aus­tralian Ju­nior Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onships in Syd­ney next month, where he will com­pete un­der the bright lights of the city’s Olympic Sta­dium.

Car­son said the achieve­ment meant the world to him.

“The feel­ing to fi­nally get to this level is a dream come true,” he said.

“I have been com­mit­ted and ded­i­cated for the last three years.

“For me, it shows no mat­ter where you come from, with hard work, goals, com­mit­ment and great sup­port, you can reach the stars.”

A ma­jor­ity of the ath­letes Car­son will com­pete against would have ac­cess to world-class fa­cil­i­ties and coaches, but his re­gional dis­ad­van­tage has never been an ex­cuse.

With no sprint or long dis­tance tracks in town, thongs, flag­ging tape and cones on the grass out­side have done the trick for Car­son.

“Luck­ily my par­ents have set up our shed as a gym so I can train weight ev­ery day,” he said.

“Track train­ing is a lot harder be­cause I have no mea­sure­ments to go by and it is very dif­fi­cult to prac­tice stay­ing in lanes when there aren’t any. Most ath­letic com­pe­ti­tions are dur­ing our wet sea­son so train­ing can be a bit in­tense be­cause of the weather.”

Spon­sored by Oil­field Trans­port Ser­vices, Car­son has flown to Perth a num­ber of times to train with coach Sam New­ton.

Broome Sports As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Mike Doyle con­grat­u­lated Car­son on his achieve­ments.

“Stephen’s fan­tas­tic suc­cess at the State ti­tles is the re­sult of a lot of hard work and ded­i­ca­tion,” he said.

“He is an in­spi­ra­tion to other ath­letes and al­ways strives to im­prove him­self. I wish him all the best at the na­tional ti­tles and have no doubt he will do him­self and Broome proud.”

The na­tional cham­pi­onships will be held for a week in Syd­ney from March 13.

Pic­ture: Jakeb Wad­dell

Stephen Car­son has qual­i­fied for the Aus­tralian Ju­nior Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onships af­ter a tremen­dous show­ing in the WA event.

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