Jamie Rankin scales rewarding heights with the Mary Peters Trust
An 18-year-old competitive climber from south Belfast is the latest recipient of a Rainbow Communications Sports funding Award, in partnership with the Mary Peters Trust.
Student Jamie Rankin, who took up climbing at the tender age of 11 said: "I discovered my love of climbing after following in the footsteps of my older sister Emily. I was never afraid of heights and always loved to climb trees as a child, so it came naturally to me. Once I started taking lessons at my local climbing wall, I never looked back.
"I enjoy climbing because it's not your average sport and I feel like I can just get away from everything and clear my head. In terms of training it can be physically exhausting as any other sport, but climbing forces you to use problem solving skills when figuring out the best and most efficient way to get up a wall. I train at Boulderworld Belfast three times a week and at the weekend I train with the rest of the Ireland team in Dublin," Jamie added.
"To date, my biggest achievements have included coming second in the Youth British Bouldering Championships 2012 and second in the British Youth Climbing Series 2012. I have also placed in the top 20 in multiple European Youth Cups.
"I was in the process of training for the World Youth Bouldering Championships in Arco, Italy but unfortunately I have been recovering from a finger injury and wasn't able to attend.
"I am currently focusing on gaining strength for next year's competition season and aim to compete in the World Youth Bouldering Championship which I will use my Rainbow Communications Sports Award funding for."
Stuart Carson from Rainbow Communications, Northern Ireland's largest independent business telecoms company, said: "We are very proud to team up with the Mary Peters Trust every month to lend our support and encouragement to our sporting stars of the future. Jamie is a great example of someone who has been dedicated to excelling at climbing from the young age of 11. I am confident that once he gets over his current injury he will continue to shine and on behalf of Rainbow Communications I wish him the best of luck."
Dame Mary Peters added: "It continually amazes me how our young athletes are so dedicated to their sports and I love to see them progressing as they step up through age/weight categories. Jamie is still as dedicated now as he was when he first started and I hope he continues to succeed."
To find about how you can apply for the award, visit www.marypeterstrust.org.