Promising track athletes tour America

MEDAL HAUL: Mount Gambier High School students Zach Kain and Kaylee Whitehead returned home from the United States with a swag of medals after competing at five track meets across Nevada, Arizona and California last month.

TWO local high school students have done Mount Gambier proud after returning home from an overseas competition with a swag of medals.

The talented athletes and Mount Gambier High School students took part in five track meets across the United States last month and with no doubt proved they have a successful future ahead.

Zach Kain and Kaylee Whitehead, who are both in Year 11, travelled across Nevada, Arizona and California for 21 days with Adelaide based Saints Athletic Club head coach Rick Wilson.

Whitehead won an impressive 14 medals, while Kain won four and achieved three personal-best times.

“We both compete for Saints Athletics Club – I travel to Adelaide for training between two and four times a month and Zach trains in Adelaide once a month,” Whitehead said.

“It was an amazing opportunity to travel overseas to compete and we were both really happy with our results.”

Kain said he was astounded by the state-of-the-art high school and college facilities.

“The high schools and colleges over there have better facilities than our state-level facilities, it was amazing to see,” he said.

“At each meet we would compete in a range of different events and the structure of each competition was different.

“I’m a sprinter and Kaylee competes in sprints and jumps.”

Whitehead said she had recently started competing in heptathlons – a mix of seven track and field events across two days.

MGHS athletics coach Kerran Wingard said both Kain and Whitehead had been involved in the school’s athletics program since Year 9.

“This year they are doing integrated learning through the athletics program which allows them to choose an activity and help run that,” he said.

“They also donate their time to help out with SAPSASA – they are working with the South East team before they head to Adelaide.

“It’s an opportunity for them to give back to the athletics community and share their expertise.”