TERANG para-athlete Caytlyn Sharp left her INAS Global Games campaign with two new pieces of silverware and a bunch of new friends.
The 16 year-old left Brisbane with a silver medal in the high jump and a bronze medal in the 4 x 100 metre relay, while she also came fourth in the triple jump and eighth in the 200 metre final.
Sharp said it was a really long but good week on a personal note.
“I’m very happy with them (my results),” she said.
“It was a good competition, I met a lot of new people and they’ve all added me and are talking to me which has been a good experience, everyone has been really friendly.
“And now I have done it (competed) I know where I want my pathways to be which is in the long jump.”
Sharp’s week started last Monday with the triple jump, which after reservations of not competing in, she decided to take a leap literally and take her place in the field.
“I wasn’t super keen on it because triple jump isn’t my pathway and I was going to scratch from it but I decided to jump,” she said.
“I ended up getting the Australian record which was my PB. It was a 9.75 which was also enough for fourth.
“It was quite surprising but it was good.”
The following day, Sharp contested the 200 metres, running third in her heat in a time of 28.01 seconds, which was the eighth fastest time overall.
That was enough to lift her into the final.
“I did not expect to make the final but I did and I ended up getting a PB (in my heat) although it didn’t feel too fast,” Sharp said.
“I came eighth in the final and I still got my PB again but it wasn’t as fast as my heat.”
Wednesday was a scheduled rest day, with Sharp returning to competition on the Thursday for the long jump heats, with the top 12 progressing to the final later that day.
“I came seventh (in the heats) and I got my Australian record and PB with a jump of 4.91 (metres),” she said.
“I was quite happy with that and excited because I didn’t expect that.
“My jumps (overall) were lower than I had hoped for but I went through the finals which were straight after.”
In her words, the final did not quite go to plan early for Sharp, before she decided to take stock and readjust her mindset.
Her change worked, with a final jump of 4.96 metres pushing her up the leader board.
“The two I had first in the final were low again and then I came to my last jump and I knew I needed a big jump,” she said.
“So I got a bit angry and just went for it and I ended up jumping and breaking my Australian record and PB again which was good.
“That was enough to take me from seventh to fourth, which was really good.”
Sharp wrapped up her competition on the Friday with a silver medal in the high jump despite fatigue and a bronze medal in the 4 x 100 metre relay.
“Unfortunately I was very tired and sore for the high jump and I was going to be dropping out at 1.40 so to be in it still at 1.46 was really good,” she said.
“And in the relay, we were leading until the last 50 metres but the other two teams tipped us and we ended up coming third.”
Sharp said she could not have achieved strong results without the support of her coach Jeremy Dixon as well as her Mum, Cindy and her sisters.
“I want to thank my coach because he definitely made my performance a lot better coming down and my Mum for coming, she calmed me down a lot,” she said.
“And also the coaches and team managers up there, without them we couldn’t have done what we did.”
Sharp will now compete at the All School Championships over the next two weekends.