A young golfer from Alford has been selected to represent Team GB at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival in Sydney next month.
16 year old Ashton Turner, who plays at Kenwick Park Golf Club, is one of 120 athletes selected to represent Team GB, and one of 10 young golfers who will become the first Team GB representatives in the sport since the Olympic Games in 1900.
Ashton will fly out to Australia with Team GB on Friday 11th January and return on Monday 21st January. The golf tournament will be a 72-hole stroke play event for individual and team medals and will be played in Sydney between Thursday 17th and Sunday 20th January.
Ashton said: “I feel privileged and honoured to be chosen to represent team GB in such a prestigious tournament and I am pleased that my hard work throughout the year has paid off and resulted in my selection for what I am sure will be a great experience.”
The Australian Youth Olympic Festival will see approximately 1,700 athletes aged 13-19, from 30 nations, competing across 17 Olympic sports in many of the venues used to host the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Team GB will compete in 11 Olympic sports: badminton, basketball, diving, golf, gymnastics, hockey, rowing, shooting, triathlon, weightlifting and wrestling.
Mark England, Team GB Chef de Mission, said: “Following the inspirational achievements of Team GB’s athletes this summer at the London 2012 Games it is an exciting time to lead this group of exceptionally talented young athletes to the Australian Youth Olympic Festival. They will get a taste of a multi-sport competition and will also have the opportunity to develop their understanding of the Olympic ideals of excellence, friendship and respect.”
At the Australian Youth Olympic Festival in 2009, Team GB won 26 Gold, 16 Silver and 26 Bronze Medals, and previous events have provided an important stepping stone for many of Team GB’s successful Olympians.
Lincolnshire’s Georgie Twigg, a Hockey Olympic Bronze Medallist from the London 2012 Games, said: “My AYOF experience was the first time I competed for my country at a multi-sport event and it was such a huge honour. I remember the excitement of being selected, the packing and then the feeling of pride when we pulled on the Team GB vest. It was great to be part of the bigger Team GB, one that included people from different sports. It was great preparation for my Olympic experience this summer.”
Ashton also recently secured a place on the Lincolnshire Elite Athlete Programme (LEAP) for 2013. LEAP is managed by Active Lincolnshires Partnership and funded by Local Authorities, businesses and organisations. The programme supports and funds talented individuals from across the county.
Rachel Belcher, LEAP Project Officer at Active Lincolnshires Partnership, said: “We’re delighted to have Ashton on the Lincolnshire Elite Athlete Programme for 2013, and what an excellent start to the year for this extremely talented golfer from Alford. We’ll be following his progress very closely and wish him all the best of luck for the competition.”