Kimberley Reed (16) from Edinburgh, tried her hand at a number of sports before being inspired by former Olympic and Commonwealth athlete Shirley Webb to take up the hammer. “I saw Shirley on Gladiators and she inspired me to try the hammer”, says Reed. “I’d already tried a number of other athletics events, but throwing is where I feel most comfortable.”
Reed waited until she was sure that the hammer was for her before dedicating herself to the sport, which is something she would recommend to other young people keen on getting into athletics. “There are so many events in athletics, I think it’s really important to try as many as you can”, she said. “I tried about seven before I found my niche with the throwing events.”
Kimberley, a member of Edinburgh Athletics Club, recorded a fantastic throw of 53.63m at the first Hammerama of the 2011 season, smashing the Scottish under-17 Age Group record of 52.02m held by 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games athlete, Myra Perkins. Not only that, but the throw meets the qualifying standard for both the 2011 Isle of Man Commonwealth Youth Games in September and the World Youth Championships, to be held in Lille, France in July.
Rewarding this fantastic achievement, Kimberley has been named as the Commonwealth Games Scotland Athlete of the Month for May, jointly with cyclist Grant Ferguson and will receive £250 from Commonwealth Games Scotland towards training and competition costs. Her consistency so far this season has also seen her rise to seventh in the world at under-18 level.
Despite her early success in 2011, Kimberley is taking things one step at a time. “I’m just setting myself little goals to keep improving my distances, but obviously I have some clear targets for the rest of the year”, she says. “I’m really looking forward to competing at the World Youth Championships, and it would be a great honour to represent Scotland at the Commonwealth Youth Games.”
The selection period for the 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games is currently open, with Youth Team Scotland athletes set to be announced on 9 August.
Download: Reed’s Success Hammered Home