Young Hemel pole vaulter aims for the top

A teenager who's the country's top Under 20 pole vaulter showed promise from an early age, according to her proud mum who is also a keen athlete.

Monday, 1st August 2016, 7:00 am
Cavendish Sixth Form pupil Jess Robinson who is Britain's top under 20 pole vaulter

Special needs careworker Sarka Hawtin, 38, says daughter Jess Robinson – an A level sudent at Cavendish Sixth Form – jumped 4 metres through a sandpit when she was only nine.

Sarka said: “She won all the events on sports days at Ardley Hill Primary School in Dunstable, where we used to live.

“This is her third season pole vaulting, competing against girls who’ve been doing it for many years. She won the title when she had only just turned 17 in June.”

The talented teen trains at the prestigious Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow Athletics Club under lead coach Ellie Spain – herself a former British champion, Commonwealth Games finalist and England international.

Ellie said: Jess is a determined and committed athlete. She’s Number One for her age group in the UK, in addition to being one of the youngest.

“As well as some high-level physical attributes, she is a competitor and thrives at big competitions – the hallmark of a young athlete who has the potential to grow into a world class senior.”

Jess was part of the British team which went to the recent European Youth Championships in Tblisi, Georgia. One of her poles has been sponsored by the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund.

Her dream is to take part in the 2020 Olympics and it looks like she’s set to make it a reality.