It proved to be an incredible few days for Lower III pupil Lizzie as she saw the reward for months of hard training and dedication at the UIPM 2017 Biathle-Triathle World Championships in Viveiro, Spain.
The journey has been a rapid one for Lizzie, who took part in her first competition only a year previously. While she had been regularly taking part in cross-country events for some time, it was only upon joining The Abbey Junior School in Upper II that Lizzie undertook her first Biathlon on the encouragement of Head of Junior School P.E, Mrs Orr, and from there entered the world of Biathle and Triathle.
The competition took place over 5 days and saw over 500 athletes from 21 different nations take part. Ranging in age from 7 to 76, athletes competed for medals in the Galicia beach resort across individual, team and mixed relay categories, in both Biathle (Run/Swim/Run) and Triathle (Shoot/Swim/Run/Repeat). On arriving in Spain, Lizzie went straight into open water swim training before participating in the magnificent Parade of Nations and Opening Ceremony. There then followed two days of intense training with the GB squad and familiarisation of the course, before race day on Saturday and Sunday.
The exceptionally high standards proved no barrier to Lizzie and her team who performed spectacularly, winning Silver in the elite category of both the World Team Biathle and Triathle Championships, with Lizzie herself coming 9th and 6th in the world in the U11 individual Triathle and Biathle events respectively. Reflecting on her feelings at the time, Lizzie commented that it was “Scary but fun, and a real privilege to compete against the best in the world.” The video below shows the girls receiving their well-deserved medals.
Beyond her love of sport, which Lizzie is able to enjoy regularly during the week as part of the rich and varied curriculum offered at The Abbey, Lizzie’s favourite things about the school include her Drama lessons, the trips (especially the Heatree Trip to Dartmoor) and her teachers. Lizzie is a smiling exemplar of all that hard work, determination and a good dose of talent can achieve – we have no doubt that she will go on to many more successes in the future.