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Athletics: Star:track athletics is galactic success

By Chris Barnes

Published 12/09/2007

Fifty boys and girls joined in the Star:Track initiative and had a week of trying out different sports and having fun at the University's Jordanstown campus through the Sports Development Unit.

With fantastic weather all week, the children enjoyed a variety of throws, jumps and running events, including javelin, long jump and sprinting.

The week finished in a gala event with a competition day when the children were given the opportunity to put all their newly learned skills to the test at the Mary Peters Track in Belfast.

Kerry Harty, UU Athletics Development Officer said: "I am delighted at how successful the Startrack programme has been this summer.

"We had a healthy number of both boys and girls participating and there are definitely a few up and coming stars in the bunch."

One such star was nine-year-old Anna Maguire who has big ambitions.

"I really liked all the sports and like athletics. I'd like to get into the Olympics but it will be very hard," Anna said.

It was a fun-packed week with the 8-14 year-olds also taking part in orienteering, to develop endurance, and a series of balance, coordination and basic skills.

This is not where the sports for the children will end however, as Kerry explains: "We will be hosting more athletics events throughout the year at UUJ.

"And I'd like to take time to thank the coaches Laura Kerr, Lynsey Glover, Elaine McCaffrey and Raymond Adams for providing a great coaching programme throughout the entire week and thank you also to the staff at UUJ Sports Centre and the Mary Peters Track."

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