Ian Mirfin – encouraged by number of emerging Scottish Para athletes (photo by Bobby Gavin at Gold Coast 2018)
Scottish Para athletes have been making their mark at global level in recent years – and that was reflected in six inclusions on the British Athletics World Class Programme for the next 12 months.
Now there is further confirmation that the future is bright in terms of the next generation of athletes hoping to follow the likes of Stef Reid and Libby Clegg by competing at the top level.
Two Scots have been named on the Paralympic Futures Academy list issued by British Athletics on Tuesday which featured an overall 24 names.
Sprinter Ross Paterson, who competed at the WPA Europeans in Berlin last summer, was included alongside Fife AC endurance athlete Owen Miller.
With a further 11 athletes named on a Paralympics Development list there are now no fewer than 19 Scottish Para athletes overall accessing British Athletics programmes at various levels and being identified as having the ability to win medals or having good potential in future years.
Ross Paterson and Owen Miller – now on British Athletics programmes
‘It’s very encouraging to have our best ever Para representation on British Athletics programmes in terms of numbers – with 19 in total,’ said Ian Mirfin, the scottishathletics National Lead Paralympic Sport.
‘The challenge going forward is to convert some of these places into more athletes on the World Class Programme and ultimately more global medals.
‘The fact that most of the athletes on the programmes underneath WCP are under the age of 23 is significant as the age profile of the athletes we have on WCP is higher and we would hope to see some of the athletes recognised by these programmes take a step-up to be our future stars of Para athletics.
‘Congratulations to everyone who has worked to get our athletes on to these programmes; not least the coaches and clubs but also friends and family who play a significant role in supporting athlete development.’
Scots on the Paralympics Futures Academy:
Ross Paterson (John Kinder) Red Star AC 400 T38
Owen Miller (Steve Doig) Fife AC 1500 T20
Scots on the Paralympics Development Academy:
Hannah Dines, Gavin Drysdale, Kayleigh Haggo (Janice Eaglesham) Red Star AC 100 RR
Alexander Thomson (Thomas Graham) Whitemoss AC 100 T/F20
Abbie McNally (Charlie Forbes) Inverness Harriers LJ T/F20
Kirsty Soutar (Bill Condie) Red Star AC Club F32
Nathan Blackie (Martin Cook) Poole AC 100-800 T34
Sean Frame, Luke Deighan, Kyle Brotherton (Ian Mirfin) Red Star AC 100-Mar T54
Steven Bryce (Tommy Boyle) VP-Glasgow 1500 T/F20
Well done from all at scottishathletics to all those athletes included on these programmes and to their coaches and the clubs helping with their development.