GC2018 sports assets set to vault Queensland’s next generation of athletes to success
Visualisation is a technique often used by athletes in order to achieve greatness. For aspiring athletes in Queensland, this dream is well on its way to becoming a reality.
With approximately 20,000 items of sporting equipment gifted to sporting organisations and communities throughout the state, the next generation of champions is sure to be inspired.
Director of Queensland Athletics and senior coach from Cairns, Shane Watson said the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games assets would help them to grow the sport, providing the opportunity for athletes of all ages and abilities to benefit from the Games for years to come.
“It will be difficult not to remember Brandon Starc's gold medal jump, Dani Stevens gold medal throw, or Isis Holt's gold medal run when looking out over Barlow Park and seeing the equipment that was there the day these athletes performed at the highest level,” he said.
Cairns is no stranger to the benefit of hosting a major sporting event, with the 2012 Oceania Championships leading to the development of a pole vault squad, coach and purchase of equipment to allow the pole vault pits to become a permanent fixture at Barlow Park. The pole vault mats were already 10 years old when moved permanently out under the new shed, and now are in dire need of replacement due to wear and tear.
“Within regional Queensland, there is always a challenge to provide the same level of facilities and equipment as in other parts of the state, and so having world-class assets available in Far North Queensland for athletes to enjoy, will provide a significant positive impact for the region,” Mr Watson said.
“The equipment we are set to receive, in its unmistakable burnt orange colours, will provide long-term stimulus to local athletes and create opportunities for them to reach their full potential.
“We are excited about the variety of assets available, but specifically the pole vault mats. Both Kurtis Marshall and Nina Kennedy vaulted in Cairns in the lead up to GC2018, and then to have the mats they won their medals on is very exciting for the local vaulters.
“The new mats and standards (uprights) will ensure Cairns maintains its status as a training venue for Australia's elite vaulters, whilst providing every opportunity for the local vaulters to thrive,” he said.
Cairns is set to host both the 2018 Australian All Schools Championships and the 2018 Queensland Primary School Championship in the coming months, with over 2000 visiting students from around Australia fixed to use the new equipment.
The Sports Assets Legacy Program is being delivered as part of the Queensland Government’s Embracing 2018 Legacy Program to create benefits for communities beyond the Games.