DISCUS CHAMPS: Willem Sorensen and Riley Townsend, both 10, both won gold medals with Riley having set a new state record of 55.91m aggregate.
DISCUS CHAMPS: Willem Sorensen and Riley Townsend, both 10, both won gold medals with Riley having set a new state record of 55.91m aggregate. Matt Taylor GLA110119DISC

WATCH: Gladstone Little Athletics duo beat best from SEQ

ATHLETICS: It's been a massive end of 2018 for two of Gladstone Little Athletic stars.

Ten-year-olds Willem Sorensen and Riley Townsend have set a new under-11 state record of a 55.91m aggregate in discus at the Little Athletics State Relay Championships.

The youngsters took time out to speak with The Observer before another training session under coach Bryan Townsend.

Riley said all the hard work has paid off.

DISCUS CHAMPS: Willem Sorensen and Riley Townsend, both 10, both won gold medals with Riley having set a new state record of 55.91m aggregate.
DISCUS CHAMPS: Willem Sorensen and Riley Townsend, both 10, both won gold medals with Riley having set a new state record of 55.91m aggregate. Matt Taylor GLA110119DISC

"I personally have been training for about a year and my dad (Bryan Townsend) is an excellent coach," he said.

"I was expecting at least the top three, but to get a state record is amazing."

Riley felt confident before the championships which were held at the Queensland State Athletics Centre.

"I never competed in something that big and it was a bit nerve-wracking, but it was good to win both in discus and shot-put," he said.

Willem said the gold medal win gives him and his mate a lot of confidence ahead of the individual-based Athletic State Titles in March also in Brisbane.

Townsend said both are now at a stage where they can start to focus on both events and old enough to learn more about the events moving forward.

"The big thing about the throws events is that you need to be very persistent," he said.

"I had a feeling they were going to be competitive, but it was a nice surprise to have them do so well against kids from the rest of the state."

After the titles in March, Willem and Riley will then turn their attention to the schools sports season.

Townsend said the training program consisted of three to four a week sessions that includes strength work, drills and throws.

"It's a hit and miss sport in shot-put and discus so technique is very important," he said.



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