A STRONG contingent of Illawarra Blue Stars high school athletes will take to the track next weekend in the NSW All Schools Championships.
Classed as one of the events on the athletic calendar that all competitors love to perform well at, it brings together athletes from all over the state from government and private schools.
The talent at this state title event is the best in the country and good results will result in athletes being selected in the state team for the National All Schools later in the year.
Blue Stars will have a strong group of athletes competing with the club gaining an increase in membership of school age students.
Headed by new record-holder Rosie Davidson, the group from IBS is strong and has all-round talent in both track and field.
Davidson will now try and add the girls' under-16 state title to her growing resume, having recently smashed the state record with a stunning six minute 57.66 (the old record was six minutes 59.08) for the two-kilometre steeplechase in a warm-up meet at Homebush.
A victory in this event will see her starting her summer campaign on a great note.
She will be joined by vastly improved sprinter Isabella Gibbins, as well as high jumpers Celeste Sulerzyki, William Ruffley and Connor Dimond, who all have been recording excellent heights in recent school and club meets.
Newcomer Blake Meyer is turning a few heads with his talent in the shot, discus, and a medal at these championships would not surprise.
The same applies for another new athlete, Marie-Louise Meier, in the girls' discus.
Marie-Louise is the niece of former club and state champion Jacquie Meier and she displays all the same talent.
Other members will make the trip to Homebush and join their clubmates, gaining valuable competition in an event that has seen many juniors progress into senior competition.
Meanwhile as junior members take on the best in the state, Masters athletes Mary Thomas and Gianna Mogentale will be heading to Brazil to take on the best in the world in the World Masters Track and Field.
Two of the best-ranked athletes, Thomas and Mogentale are both at the top end of the age bracket for these titles, Mogentale (49) contesting the sprints in the 45/49 age bracket and Thomas (69), the throws in the 65/69.
More on their results and their assault on the world titles in a later column, with the world masters from October 14 through to October 28, being one of the biggest track and field meets in the world.