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Saturday, 09 March 2013
Bolton School Boys’ Division Year 12 pupil, Andrew Keat, represented Great Britain in a Youth A International Tetrathlon held in Gloucester.
Andrew was part of an eight man GB team of 17/18year olds competing against teams from Egypt, Germany, France, Khazakstan, Portugal, Spain and Ireland.
The Tetrathlon consisted of swimming, fencing, shooting and running events. Each athlete earns points for each event and the team with the most points wins. Team GB came a close second to the German Team to win the silver medal.
Below is Andrew’s account of the competition:
The day began very early - a 5am call for breakfast and we were in the pool by 6.30am. Despite the early hour (I am not at my best in the mornings), I managed to do a good time and finished in joint 3rd position. Next came the fencing; a gruelling 2 hours of round robin competition. The Europeans are very good at fencing so there was no time for a lapse of concentration despite the hunger and fatigue you start to feel as the competition progresses. For the first time, I had an annoying problem with the tip of my sword as a small screw kept coming loose so that my hits weren’t always recorded. Still I managed to get through and as a team we were in a very good position after this event. Next was a change of venue to a shooting range with running course, so all contestants piled onto a fleet of coaches and took a well earned short rest on the journey.
The shoot and run takes time for preparation and warm up, and the heat I was drawn in did not begin its warm up time until late afternoon, so at least there was some down time as we watched the other competitors run their hearts out and then compose themselves for the steady hand needed for the shoot 5 targets in under 50 seconds.
Whilst my shooting is not perhaps always the fastest I can usually put in a good run which I was able to do this time and eventually finished as the 3rd GB team member home. Our combined points were enough to make sure that we won the Silver Team Medal, sadly pipped at the post by the German team. So finally, 12 hours after we had started the day, we got our reward of a medal which was very satisfying and without it I would have been a very disappointed athlete who made the long drive back to Bolton!
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