TEDDY Gannon says his success has come as a surprise even to him.
Gannon, a Year 9 pupil at Woking High School, has broken long-standing district records in discus throwing.
And he took home two medals from the Mizuno British Rowing Indoor Championships at Lee Valley VeloPark in Stratford, East London.
But as a relative newcomer to both sports, even he didn’t predict what he would achieve in such a short space of time.
He told the News & Mail: “I wasn’t expecting to do as well as I have done, in athletics especially.
“One week I didn’t have any perspective on where I was, and then suddenly I was selected for English Schools [Athletic Association national championships last summer, where he finished sixth in the country for discus in his age group]. That was kind of a shock.
“And with rowing I’ve only started recently [he joined Guildford Rowing Club in September], so I didn’t expect to come away with medals [from the Stratford competition where he won gold in the Year 9 boys’ 500m and bronze in the four-minute event].
James Justice is director of sport at Woking High, and he has been amazed by Gannon’s progress.
Justice said: “He’d never thrown a discus before he came to the school, but in the space of two years he’s now ranked number one in the UK for his year group.
“We’ve been quite fortunate that we’ve had some really good discus throwers at the school – like the Webb brothers, Jake and Toby, who are older students than Teddy and who have done a lot of one-to-one work with him.
“The ironic thing now is that Teddy is breaking all their records. The distance he’s throwing it is further than anyone else we’ve ever had at the school.
“He shattered the [Woking] district record last year, it was frightening. Those records date back 35 years and he put about seven metres on the record.
“He’s determined and has a great work ethic. He watches a lot of things on YouTube – and the coaches at Woking Athletic Club [where Gannon is a member] have really pushed him on.
“It’s phenomenal how Teddy has developed.”
For the full story get the 2 January edition of the News & Mail