Josh Taylor going for gold in the 400m. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
Paralympian Josh Taylor set meet records in all three of his gold medal-winning performances at the North Island secondary schools track and field championships over the weekend at Inglewood.
Taylor, 15, was the star act of a Wairarapa team who finished with five golds and two bronze medals and had the majority of their athletes claim top 10 placings.
The fields in the para junior boys events may have been small but that didn’t deter from Taylor’s efforts as he set new marks in the 100m (27.92secs), 400m (1min 4.73secs) and discus (20.22m) and placed third in the long jump (3.39m) for good measure.
His strong form came as no surprise to his Athletics Wairarapa coach John Quinn who said the youngster had considerable potential in a wide variety of disciplines.
“Honestly, right now, I don’t know what his best event is, whatever he does he does well,” Quinn said.
“There’s no telling how far he could go if he’s prepared to put in the hard yards, there’s a lot of improvement still to come.”
Wairarapa’s Jayden Webb-Milner, 13, was a class above his rivals in the junior boys triple jump.
His best leap was 11.34m while runner-up Ollie Main (Waikato-Bay of Plenty) managed 10.81m and third placegetter Lathem Goodwin, also of Waikato-Bay of Plenty, 10.80m.
Mikael Starzynski also had a comfortable win in the intermediate boys 400m.
His lead-up form suggested the Wairarapa 15-year-old would take a power of beating and his time of 50.38secs was almost 1sec better than that of runner-up, Sam Porter (North Harbour), who clocked 51.32secs.
Third was Brian Lealiifano (Auckland) in 52.19secs.
Picking up a bronze medal for Wairarapa in the senior boys’ hammer throw was Cameron Clatworthy with a distance of 49.85m.
Anthony Noblio (North Harbour) took the gold with 65.35m and Nick Palmer (East Coast North) was second with 56.63m.