Loose change to chase a dream

AJ Platell and Will Robinson
AJ Platell and Will Robinson

Two athletes from Beaudesert and District Little Athletics Club have been selected for an upcoming New Zealand Development Tour.

There were 60 applications but only 30 athletes in the Under 14 and Under 15 age groups were selected to take part in the tour, with Beaudesert’s Will Robinson and AJ Platell delighted to be attending.

Selection is based on behaviour at Centre, Region and State competitions, commitment to Little Athletics, longevity of service and involvement in Little Athletics.

“For Little Athletics to only take 30 kids from across Queensland and two of them from Beaudesert is remarkable,” said AJ’s mother, Eden Platell.

“They are both high jumpers and excel in that.  They have both been with the Club since they were in Under sevens.”

The 2024 Tour takes place from Saturday 6 to Monday 15 January 2024. 

Athletes will spend ten days in New Zealand and compete at the Colgate Games in Dunedin.

During the Tour, Will and AJ will spend ten days travelling, training and competing together throughout the South Island of New Zealand against local athletes from all over the Island. 

The 30 Australian athletes will take part in the South Island Colgate Games. These games are run by Athletics New Zealand and are the largest on the New Zealand Children’s Athletics calendar.

The Tour is a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience a team environment in a sport where individual performance is normally the focus. 

Little Athletics Queensland has successfully conducted this tour for the past 14 years and says that both parents and athletes who have previously attended speak highly of the benefits of the tour, not just for their athletic development, but also their social and emotional development. 

It will be Will’s first time travelling out of the country – he will have to apply for a passport before he can go.

Both of the 14 year olds intend to continue on with their athletics in the future.

Will’s dream is to one day compete in the Olympics in high jump and the 100 metre sprint.

The cost of attending the Tour is $3,300 per athlete.

Beaudesert and District Little Athletics Club is running a shrapnel drive to collect loose change to go towards costs.

The Club is asking anyone with spare change to drop it in to one of the Club’s collection tins before the end of November.

Collection tins are at the following locations until the end of November:  Mitre 10 Beaudesert, Heits Butchery, Scenic Rim Farmer’s Markets, Ward’s Driveway and Jeldwyn Warehouse in Yatala.

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About Keer Moriarty 471 Articles
Small town newspaper Editor, journo, social media manager and tea lady.