SCHOOL GAMES: Chan leaps to more success

Karim Chan competes in the long jump during day two of the 2017 School Games.
Karim Chan competes in the long jump during day two of the 2017 School Games.
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There was more glory for Peterborough Athletic Club’s Karim Chan at the weekend.

The 16 year-old athlete, coached by Femi Akinsanya, was a winner at the School Games National Finals at Loughborough University.

He won the boys ambulant long jump title with a leap of 5.90m.

And the win came hot on the heels of a gold medal-winning performance at the World Para Junior Championships in Switzerland, also in the long jump, and a double title win at the England Under 17 Championships at Bedford, in the long jump and 100m.

Chan, who suffers from autism, has just finished studying at Marshfields School and will be starting at Loughborough College later this month.

He said: “Basically, I went in confident that I was going to do well and after the first couple of jumps I thought it was going well. My fifth jump didn’t go so well so on my last jump I really went for it and it paid off.”

Of his School Games experience Chan said: “It was just amazing, I love the supporters here and they give me confidence, it means so much to me.”

The School Games are an integrated multi-sport event for the UK’s most talented school-age athletes, with around 1,600 athletes competing across 12 sports, seven of which included disability disciplines.

Previous competitors include Paralympic champions Hannah Cockroft, Ellie Simmonds and Jonnie Peacock, Olympic champion Adam Peaty, and GB sprinters Adam Gemili and Dina Asher-Smith.

The School Games are the springboard for future athletes with 56 of the 382 athletes representing Team GB at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio having competed at the School Games.

The four-day event is supported by National Lottery funding from Sport England and delivered by the Youth Sport Trust.