Organisers thrilled with Far West Little Athletics season

Far West Little Athletics (FWLA) president Darren Bennett said a “really successful” 2018 season would be a foundation for future seasons.

The FWLA calendar was altered last season to start on October 16 and run for 10 weeks until Christmas, rather than including a break and returning in the new year as had been done previously.

Mr Bennett said there were 63 participants in the 2018 season, up from 25 the year earlier.

“We are happy with how it panned out and engagement during the season was a lot better,” he said.

“We had about 20 tiny tots, so the three to five age group – which is good for the future if they keep at it – with the bulk of numbers from under seven to under 10s, going up to under 14s.

“The new calendar worked well and we may even start a little earlier next season, before the end of term three.”

Participants were involved in a range of track and field events – running distances up to 1500 metres, plus disciplines such as long jump, high jump and shot put.

Mr Bennett said he saw improvement from the beginning of the season to the end.

“We had some great kids coming through and I hope a few of them can go on to higher levels,” he said.

“There were countless personal bests from athletes and they were getting better week in and week out.”

Mr Bennett hopes to take a FWLA group to Port Lincoln next month for a two-day country championships meet, with the dates still to be confirmed.

He said it would be good to see a Far West team compete.

“All those registered to Little Athletics can attend and that will be a good opportunity for kids to go away as a group and represent the club,” Mr Bennett said.

“We will run a few training sessions before Port Lincoln, to get everybody back into the swing of it.”

Mr Bennett said FWLA organisers were looking forward to building from a successful season.

He also encouraged more children to join the Ceduna-based group for the 2019 season.

“Like ever sport there needs to be a few to really commit to it and we had a good working group involved this year, plus parental support,” he said.

“We also had four kids from Streaky Bay come up every week, which was great, and we encourage kids from other nearby towns like Wirrulla and Karcultaby to come up next season.

“We can handle having more kids, it just requires more parental support.”