Athletics star Colette set for Olympic arena

ALL SMILES . . . Colette with, left to right, Olympic triple jumper Jonathan Edwards, runner Lee McConnell and diver Leon Taylor.
ALL SMILES . . . Colette with, left to right, Olympic triple jumper Jonathan Edwards, runner Lee McConnell and diver Leon Taylor.

MOTHERWELL teenager Colette Martin this week insisted she is more determined than ever to be part of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games after being chosen again to be part of the Bank of Scotland Local Heroes initiative.

The 17-year-old Taylor High School pupil will get a taste of the London Paralympics when she takes to the track at the Olympic Stadium for a 2012 test event.

And the Red Star AC athlete wants to ensure her trip to the capital is far from an international flash in the pan with Glasgow, and the Rio 2016 Paralympics, inked in on her calendar.

Colette was one of more than 60 of Scotland’s most promising young athletes who descended on Scotstoun Stadium in Glasgow as the 2012 Local Heroes programme was launched with the help of Olympians Lee McConnell and Jonathan Edwards.

After being re-selected, wheelchair athlete Colette will once again benefit from £1,000 of funding throughout 2012 - and she can’t wait to get started on her outdoor season with that high-profile visit to London in May top of her agenda.

She said: “The Paralympic test event is what I am working towards and I am really excited about being at that.

“The 2012 Paralaympics are too soon for me so to get a taste of the stadium will be really inspiring as I work towards the Glasgow Commonwealth Games and the Rio Paralympics in 2016.

“This year is all about getting as much experience as I can because I was out injured for a fair bit last year.”

In partnership with SportsAid, the Bank of Scotland - as part of Lloyds Banking Group - initiative is designed to ensure more talent reach the top of their sport.

In total 346 talented athletes are part of the programme with 264 Lloyds TSB Local Heroes in England and Wales also receiving funding towards training and competing.

Colette admitted being selected for a second year on the scheme was a welcome boost.

She said: “The funding is very useful because I tend to travel across the UK for competitions.”

Bank of Scotland Local Heroes, in partnership with SportsAid, provides support and funding to 82 of Scotland’s most talented developing athletes on their journey to London 2012 and beyond. Since 2008, the programme has supported 1,000 athletes. Follow future stars at facebook.com/bankofscotlandlocalheroes.