Highly-rated athletics prospect Aiden Davies has set his sights on competing in the World Youth Games in Oregon in late summer.
The 18-year-old Ridgewood pupil needs a score of around 7,300 points for the decathlon to meet the qualifying standard.
His personal best points haul in the gruelling event is 6,300, though on paper it is now around the 7,000 mark.
Aiden’s impressive performance on his Great Britain under-20 debut in Sheffield several weeks ago – where he posted new personal bests in both the long jump and his weakest event pole vault - has given him renewed confidence that he can reach the qualifying standard.
Particularly as he has recently found a physiotherapist who has been able to help him with a painful patella tendonitis problem which has affected both of his knees for 18 months.
Aiden plans to compete in the England Indoor Championships at Sheffield later this month where he will compete in the under-20s 400m and long jump.
“It will be my first 400 of the year so it will act as a marker as to where I am and hopefully what I can do outdoor in the 400m hurdles this summer,” he said.
As well as targeting the World Youth Championships, Aiden is also hoping to mark his last ever English Schools’ Track & Field and Combined Events meetings with gold medals.
He started in the sport running cross country and 800m races for Doncaster before the club’s multi-events coach Bruce Bewley spotted his potential.
“I would never have been where I am today without Bruce because I would never thought of trying multi-events,” he admitted.
“Yet now I can’t imagine just doing one event; I’d find it boring.
“Doing ten events allows you to shut off from one which isn’t going very well at the time.”
Aiden trains six days out of seven, generally for a couple of hours during the week and up to four hours on a Saturday.
“We try and work on two or three events in midweek and sometimes three or four on a Saturday,” he said.
Bewley has continued to coach Aiden, who is both appreciative of his commitment and the experience and expertise he brings to the role.
“The relationship between and athlete and a coach is very important,” said Aiden.
“The fact that Bruce was a multi-events athlete himself definitely helps.
“For instance when I’ve done two no-throws or no jumps he’s been there and has the experience to help me out.
“What I also like about Bruce is that he is always constantly looking to go courses to improve coaching credentials.”