An All Saints Sixth Form student from Speke has successfully made the British team for this year’s European Athletics Under-20 Championships in Tallinn, Estonia.
Henry Nwoke, who attends All Saints Sixth Form in Garston, will run in the 4x100m relay and is the only young person from the city to have secured such an opportunity.
Henry has had an illustrious career so far in athletics, despite only taking it up in 2018. Mr Mike Sweeney, a teacher of maths at The Academy of St Nicholas and a coach at Liverpool Harriers, spotted potential in Henry when he was just 15.
With the support of Mr Sweeney, Henry has gone from strength to strength, most notably winning double gold at the England Athletics Championships in 2019 for the 60m and 200m races.
In February 2020, Henry also won the 60m race at the England U20 Championships. However, the pandemic put his coaching and training on hold for many months but this didn’t deter Henry as he continued to push himself and trained on his own.
Mr Sweeney said: “This period of time could have demotivated Henry but he was so resilient and never gave up. It was really inspiring to see.
“Thankfully The Academy of St Nicholas and All Saints Sixth Form allowed him to use the AstroTurf facilities as he limited access to train in places.”
Eventually one-to-one training sessions were allowed and then small group sessions. Competitions were few and far between but Henry remain determined and eventually was able to take part in the British Olympic trails.
It was these trials that meant Henry was picked to represent Great Britain at the European Athletics Under-20 Championships in Tallinn. Henry will run in the 4x100m relay race.
Henry is now represented by Blue Carpet Management and has also bagged himself a sponsorship deal with Adidas.
Speaking about his latest achievement, Henry said: “I’m really proud of the fact that I have made the GB team, it’s something that all athletes aspire to and something I know can push me on in the future to achieve more. The experience of competing internationally against the best in Europe is one that I am looking forward to as I feel it is where I belong.”
Mr Sweeney added: “Henry has learned so much in the relatively short time he has been doing athletics and still has plenty to learn, the future is certainly bright. This season hasn’t been without its challenges for Henry, both through COVID and the stresses and strains of training at this level. We are both delighted he has made the team and are looking forwards at the bigger picture to Henry’s senior career.”