Our teams finish strongly
By ADAM HICKS firstname.lastname@example.org THE lack of a home track has not stopped the Collins Creek Public School relay team from becoming the second-fastest in the State.
The small school, 15km north of Kyogle, does not have a large flat area to train on.
So Dianna Smith, Sonny Thomas, Madu Syre and Angus Keys deployed some creative strategies to get ready for their showdown with some of New South Wales' fastest kids at the State Athletics Championships PP6 relay finals in Sydney last week.
They went cross-country style, with a splash obstacle course thrown in for endurance purposes.
With the help of the community the team prepared for the finals in an improvised run around the school yard's boundary.
The challenging course made them run around the school's fence line, up and down banks, bend around trees, weave between four water tanks and race up a hill at the finish.
The unusual approach paid dividends, with the young speedsters finishing second in State for their division. But it didn't come easily.
The team trained up to six times a day for months to get ready for the finals.
The training sessions were made into a whole-school event with the rest of the school's 18 students keen to challenge the relay members in a number of handicap races.
Wollongbar Public School also carried the baton for Northern Rivers relay teams.
Anthony Wright, Sam Hancock, Mitchell Pearce and Zac Iliffe combined to finish seventh in the junior boys relay final at the Public Schools Sports Association State athletics carnival.