Dreams come true for six West Lakes Canoe Club young paddlers who will represent Australia at the Junior Olympic Hopes Regatta.
"To represent my country, has always been a dream" said Jace Bayliss, "we are all looking forward to the competition and the experience it will give us"
Training up to 12 times a week has helped these 6 young paddlers reach their goals. Selected into the Australian Team for the Junior Olympic Hopes Regatta to be held at Racice (near Prague in the Czech Republic) between 14th & 16th September, the competition will be the first appearance on the international stage for many of the junior paddlers.
"This is our clubs biggest representation in a national junior team" Mr Loughry, President of West Lakes Canoe Club said. Our 6 West Lakes paddlers join 3 other South Australians (Francesca Kidd from Onkaparinga Canoe Club and Elliott Santarelli & Matthew Grimwade from Christian Brother College Canoe Club) making a total of 9 South Australians and 29 other juniors from across the country making a total of 38 selected in the Australian Team. "Its also a reflection of the hard work put in by our club coaches who are all volunteers." "Our club is bursting at the seams at present with a growing membership and many more juniors wanting to paddle"
Mr Loughry’s daughter Lulu, 16, was selected after strong performances at the national championships in Perth. "While it can be hard training with early morning starts when it’s cold and raining, getting picked to represent your country makes it worthwhile" Lulu said. "It is obviously a great honour and I just can’t wait to get over there with the rest of the team." Lulu will be racing in the Women’s K1 & K2 classes over 200m.
Teammate Jace Bayliss will be racing in the 200m and 500m single canoe class. Jace was selected for the team after winning the under-16 events in Perth. Jace said "Canoe involves kneeling in an open canoe and paddling with a single blade while in a kayak you are seated and power your craft through the water with a double bladed paddle.
Each of the six canoeist will need to raise about $6500.00 to fund their trip so all have begun fundraising.To help the team get to the Czech Republic email email@example.com