Triple jumper rock­ing to­wards ti­tle

The Southland Times - - News - Jamie Searle

Gore triple jumper An­drew Al­lan finds lis­ten­ing to clas­sic rock mu­sic helps pass the time when trav­el­ling to and from train­ing in In­ver­cargill.

Al­lan trains at Sur­rey Park three af­ter­noons a week but on Mon­days he makes two trips to In­ver­cargill, with the first be­ing for a gym ses­sion be­tween 7am and 8am.

‘‘I know the road pretty well but it can be quite bor­ing . . . the mu­sic helps,’’ Al­lan, 18, said.

His com­mit­ment to train­ing has led to him be­ing the New Zealand sec­ondary schools’ No 1 se­nior boys’ triple jumper for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year. He over­came mild shin splints to win the ti­tle in Dunedin at the week­end with a per­sonal best of 14.24 me­tres.

‘‘[The splints were caused by] a lot of force put through the shins and legs dur­ing jumps,’’ Al­lan said.

His shins will get a good rest now as he is tak­ing a break from train­ing un­til late Jan­uary. Al­lan’s next goal is the na­tional track and field cham­pi­onships in Christchurch in March. At the cor­re­spond­ing event last year he won a sil­ver medal in the un­der 20 triple jump.

His four years in ath­let­ics have been un­der the guid­ance of In­ver­cargill coach Lance Smith.

‘‘I wouldn’t be here [in ath­let­ics] with­out him . . . he’s in­dis­pens­able,’’ Al­lan said. ‘‘Not ev­ery train­ing ses­sion is fun but I en­joy most of them.’’ Smith has coached a lot of South­land’s top junior ath­letes, in­clud­ing triple jumpers Atipa Mabonga and Greer Al­sop who are now in the United States com­pet­ing.

Al­lan’s in­ter­est in ath­let­ics was kin­dled at pri­mary and in­ter­me­di­ate school sports days.

‘‘I did quite well and de­cided to take it a bit fur­ther [from the age of 14].’’

Al­lan, who is a mem­ber of Acad­emy South­land, has re­ceived an Elite Sports Schol­ar­ship to at­tend Lin­coln Univer­sity next year. This year was his last at Gore High School.

PHO­TOS: ROBYN EDIE/STUFF

An­drew Al­lan trains at In­ver­cargill’s Sur­rey Park. Al­lan trav­els from Gore to In­ver­cargill four times a week for train­ing.

Coach Lance Smith, left, gives ad­vice to An­drew Al­lan at Sur­rey Park in In­ver­cargill.

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