Rooney races to double gold
Conor Rooney has underlined his status as one of the best young wheelchair racers in the UK at the Typhoo National Junior Athletics Championships 2015 at Warwick University in Coventry.
As part of the North West team, the 15-year-old from Prescot bagged two golds and a silver in his classification of T54.
Conor, who attends St Edmund Arrowsmith in Whiston, came first in the 100m and 800m and helped his relay team win silver in the 4 x 100m despite a heavy fall in the change-over which caused ligament damage and bruising.
The Everton fan, who competes for Knowsley, has been racing for three years after his talent was spotted by Shelly Woods, the elite Paralympian wheelchair racer.
Now Conor wants to emulate the woman who won silver in the marathon at the London 2012 Paralympics and was first in the 2007 London Marathon: He said: “My goal is to be a Paralympian like Shelly and David Weir.
“Wheelchair racing makes me fit and it has changed my life, giving me confidence and helping me make friends.”
Meanwhile the five strong team from Bluebell Park School in Kirkby returned from the championships with a hatful of medals and can now boast four national champions in their classifications and age groups.
Reece Day in the u18 T36 won 400m, Gold, 100m, Silver; 200m, Silver; Nicole Lloyd in the u20 T20 won 100m, Gold; Shot, Silver; Discus, Bronze; Amy Shaw also in the u20 T20 won Javelin, Gold; Discus, Silver; Shot, Bronze; Libby Johnson in the u18 T20 won Discus, Gold; Shot, Silver; and Alex Dawber in the u20 T20 won u20 T20 Discus, Silver; Shot, Bronze.
The two-day Typhoo championships, organised by the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) and supported by Typhoo are one of the highlights of the disability sports calendar with some competitors hoping their success might lead to a golden career in athletics.
Many elite disabled athletes began their own success at this prestigious event, including Shelly Woods herself, Hannah Cockroft, Aled Davies and Hollie Arnold whose talent marked them out as potential world-class athletes.