Successful sporting stars will benefit as district council awards grants

TWO dozen talented athletes of all ages have received financial backing from North Herts District Council. It is to assist with training, equipment and travel costs as part of the district council s policy to support talented young athletes. The successfu

TWO dozen talented athletes of all ages have received financial backing from North Herts District Council.

It is to assist with training, equipment and travel costs as part of the district council's policy to support talented young athletes.

The successful ones included:

*Eleven-year-old diver Sebastian Jaunzens who competed in Barcelona at the European Championships in the under-14 category.

*Bradley Evans, an amateur boxer that went to Minnesota for the World Golden Gloves event.

*Edward Roberts who represented Great Britain in the Topper (sailing) World Championships.

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*A British BMX racing champion in 11-year-old James Handleigh.

*Nationally high ranked athletes Bunmi Awokoya, Lauren Cunningham, Joanne Mansell, Alice Rackham and Louise Shortland.

*A world (under-20) champion in the biathlon in Natalie Barnard.

* And a boxing coach since 1981, including 32 national finalists, in Dave Blows.

Others included badminton Laura Bygrave and Anna Collis; tennis James and Kitty Doherty, and Elizabeth Hodge and football Luke Churchill; swimming Faye Barnard, Rachael George, and Cara Purvis; and cricket Dominic and Thomas Simmons, and Ben Smith and gymnastics Sophie Cripps.

North Herts District Council recognise the huge costs borne by families in training promising athletes.

Sports development officer Leanne Fair said: "To get anywhere near Olympic level is likely to cost an aspiring young sports man or woman many thousands of pounds and the 'bank of mum and dad' is severely tested."

For more information about sports grants for talented individuals, call the sports development officer on 01462 474000.

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