Whitsunday teen a heptathlon star
A WHITSUNDAY teenager will return to the national titles for the third time after excelling at a state event earlier this month.
Proserpine State High School student Katie Campbell placed fourth in the under-18 heptathlon at the Queensland Combined Events Championships in Brisbane on January 10-11, claiming a Personal Best (PB) points tally of 4262.
"I was pretty happy. It was my first heptathlon since nationals at the start of last year," the 16-year-old said.
"I got a PB and qualified for nationals so I'm pretty excited."
The Wilson Beach resident has been practising heptathlons, an athletics event made up of 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin and 800m, for three years after she was encouraged to do so by coaches.
"I'm a fairly all-round athlete. We thought it seemed better to put me into all of them and I get to do everything," she said.
"A couple of my coaches suggested it so we figured we'd give it a go." Since then she hasn't looked back, winning bronze at nationals in 2013 and placing fifth in 2014.
Out of the seven disciplines, Katie says high jump, long jump and javelin are her favourites.
It's little wonder that she has also gained recognition for these events alone - she will be contesting individual nationals (Sydney) and Queensland championships later this year, hoping to take on long jump, javelin, triple jump and high jump.
In preparation for the March national titles in Brisbane, Katie will train as much as five times a week while also juggling her final year at school.
Although she's not entirely certain what next year and beyond holds, Katie is sure athletics will remain in the picture.