WSAA National Track & Field Championships 2018
Athletes from all 8 School districts across Wales descend on Cardiff on Saturday, July 7th. for the 71st. Welsh Schools Athletic Association Track & Field Championships. For the seventh successive year the event will make up part of Gemau Cymru, a multi-sport event which this year involves competition in 11 different sports across Cardiff and the wider community over 3 successive days starting on Friday 6th July.
With entries numbering over 600 across the age groupings competition for medals is sure to be tough with many of last year’s champions returning to defend titles or having the challenge of moving into new age groupings.
The prize of International representation will await many, for others it is about experiencing high level competition in a championship environment for the first time. We expect many personal bests to be set and Championship Best Performances broken, but also new friendships forged and personal goals achieved as our young athletes look to move up in performance levels.
Selection will take place on Sunday July 8th. for the 2018 SIAB Track & Field which this year moves back to Grangemouth in Scotland. Middle age group champions are guaranteed a place in the teams with the second discretionary place going on performances on Saturday plus Power of 10 rankings. Top performing athletes in the Junior age groups also come into the reckoning for honours as well. There is also an incentive for our Senior athletes again this year with the acceptance of a Welsh Athletics invitation to field a Schools Team in the Welsh Athletics International at the end of the month. Selection will again take place this weekend with performances this weekend and from Power of 10 deciding selection. Senior athletes are reminded that a win on Saturday does not guarantee selection.
Cardiff & Vale will look to defend their overall team title from 2017 and will as usual face tough competition from the other traditional powerhouse of Dyfed. Afan Nedd Tawe broke the monopoly last year by taking the Junior Boys team title, they will be looking to improve on this performance. Welsh Schools also present 6 Individual awards for outstanding performances on the day, these are decided by a panel on the day of the Championships and normally go to those achieving Championships best on the day, but again not exclusively.
Good luck to all those taking part this weekend not only in our Championships but across the 11 sports.
Thanks to Steve Jones of WSAA for this weekend's preview