Throws Meet, Leiria Portugal – 30 April 2016

Luisa Goes Big!!

Ambition is important in all walks of life but without the relevant skills and experience very often we fail to meet the standards we set ourselves. Exposure to higher and higher competitions, club, county, regional, and national are all steps on the road toward meeting your international aspirations. However, delivery on each of the stages is quite a different aspect of experience – in other words it’s one thing to desire success and yet another to achieve it.

This year Luisa Chantler Edmond was seeking to achieve a European Youth qualification in the discus. The standard set by UKA was 45 mts. This is no small challenge as for example the Radley club record for the u20 women’s discus is 44.60mts – this has stood since 1992. European Youth means those born in calendar years 1999and 2000.

The window to achieve the set target is very small, and particularly so in an outdoor throwing event which is highly weather dependant. With this in mind UKA recommend several overseas opportunities to achieve the targets – one such opportunity was in Leiria on 30 Apr. Wanting and doing are miles apart and the pressure of competition can cause people to fail. This was not the case with Luisa! Having gone through the mill in all levels of national competition, winning the national u15 girls shot title once and a medal as ESAA were all stepping stones along the path to her first international.

Warm up went well and then the first throw hit the right hand netting – not a great start but no reason to panic. The second throw was pulled a huge distance to the left – not a good throw from a right handed thrower – however it was a long way – 45,25mts a club record and qualification for the European Youth team! We could have stopped then but a further series of throws smattered around the 43mts area just completed a great series on a momentous day.

Job done Luisa had experienced an international field of Irish, Dutch, Portuguese and Italian competitors, had delivered on the biggest stage of her career to-date and had taken the 24 year old club record along the way. A 4 day trip for 6 throws might seem excessive but these are the parameters you have to consider when looking to an international career – lots of downtime, hotels and relaxing – not such a bad life!!

[photo Luisa with the record]

Pete O’Keefe