Mansfield Harrier runner to get a taste of the Olympic Games

TASTE OF THE OLYMPICS -- for Mansfield Harrier athlete Luke Duffy, who is off to the 2016 School Games.
TASTE OF THE OLYMPICS -- for Mansfield Harrier athlete Luke Duffy, who is off to the 2016 School Games.
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A taste of the Olympic Games is to be enjoyed by teenage Mansfield Harrier runner Luke Duffy after he was selected to compete at the 2016 School Games.

The event, which starts on Thursday and runs until Sunday, is a national multi-sport championship for the UK’s elite young athletes.

More than 1,600 youngsters will tackle 12 sports, including disability disciplines, across two venues -- Loughborough University and the Ponds Forge international pool at Sheffield -- in an Olympic-style spectacular supported by National Lottery funding. And 15-year-old Luke, who lives in Mapperley, is to represent the Midlands in the 1500m.

“I am absolutely buzzing,” he said. “I am really looking forward to competing against the top lads from around the country.”

Luke is following in the footsteps of some of Britain’s biggest sporting stars who have competed at the School Games before going on to senior international glory. They include gold medallists at this summer’s Rio Olympics, world-record breaking swimmer Adam Peaty and cyclist Owain Doull, plus Team GB athletes Adam Gemili and Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Paralympic champions Hannah Cockroft, Ellie Simmonds and Jonnie Peacock.