Eight rising stars of track and field are part of Team Scotland for the Commonwealth Youth Games in Trinidad & Tobago this summer.
With just over a week to go until the Opening Ceremony of the Commonwealth Youth Games, we caught up with two of our Athletics athletes, Corey Campbell and Amy Teasdale, who told us how it feels to be part of Team Scotland and what advice they would give to those looking to get involved in athletics.
Congratulations on becoming part of Team Scotland, how does it feel being chosen to represent your country at the Youth Games?
Corey: It feels great to be selected to represent Team Scotland at the Youth games and I look forward to competing out in Trinidad.
Amy: It’s a bit surreal because selection has been a goal that’s lingered in the back of my head for the past year when I first heard about the games but it has been one of those things that you feel will just stay in your head to help push you through the hard times. So having it actually materialise is still a bit crazy but it’s so exciting to have the opportunity to travel out with a multi-sport team and the ability to involve yourself in the other sports just through chatting with the team and hopefully spectating those also competing on Trinidad!
How have you been preparing for the games and what are you most looking forward to once you are out in Trinidad and Tobago?
Corey: Training has been going well recently. I have also been preparing for the extreme temperatures that we will experience out in Trinidad. I’m most looking forward to learning more about international competition and testing myself against some of the commonwealth’s best youth athletes.
Amy: Training has been going well and everyone around me has been so supportive in facilitating me getting to the games in one piece! My coach Sarah, has really put time and effort into our preparation and her boundless positivity is honestly so impressive as I am a bit guilty of stressing and overthinking the smallest things so her help definitely hasn’t gone unnoticed! Even just the sense of community and backing from my training group and gym took me by surprise when the people you train alongside every week seem so proud- it helps you remember that these opportunities are what you are putting in the work for.
My event isn’t until the end of the competition so I’m going to have a lot of time beforehand and I’ve made it my mission to try and just immerse myself in everything there is to do and see at the games in the lead up! Watching the other sports and training in a completely different format on the island isn’t something that I’m going to ever get to experience again in a youth games so I do just think I’m going to have to go with the flow and not focus solely on my race until the latter stages as to enjoy everything in the meantime!
What’s been a highlight of your sporting journey so far?
Corey: Being selected to represent GB last year for the European u18 Championships. Throughout the championships I gained valuable experience which I hope to bring with me to the CYG and beyond!
Amy: I’ve experienced being away with many teams within athletics and I think that’s made me appreciate the sport so much more because you learn about the work your competitors put in to be at the level we are at. This helps bonds which you carry through to every competition and trip while allowing you to see your competitors as friends rather than people to be fearful of!The moment I achieved the qualifying standard that secured my place in this team was very special. To have all the hard work pay off, after various setbacks this year, at our national 3k champs was just brilliant!
What piece of advice would you give to those wanting to get involved in Athletics?
Corey: Just throw yourself in by joining your local athletics club and remember that everyone starts somewhere. It’s a great opportunity to meet new people, learn new skills and have fun.
Amy: For people wanting to get involved, there are so many ways into the sport through amateur clubs and groups where you will instantly find like-minded people to keep you motivated. The athletic community in Scotland feels very close so there are always people you know competing and progressing to keep you engaged and involved even if you are not the one competing!