Mansfield’s Beth Mortiboy is jumping for joy at the end of her best ever season in athletics.
The 18-year triple jumper, who has just left Samworth Church Academy, where she was head girl, is about to go to university to start work on a chemistry degree with a track and field target of cracking the 12m barrier in competition.
She rounded off her outdoor athletics season by being selected to be one of three regional U20 ladies to represent Team England at the Welsh International in Cardiff against Wales.
Beth, the current indoor and outdoor Midlands U20 champion was the England (Midlands) choice in the Triple Jump, finishing a credible second in windy conditions behind the current UK U20 number one ranked athlete in a clean sweep of the medals for Team England.
Consistently in the top 10 UK rankings, Beth was recently voted Junior Sportsperson of the Year at the 2014 Mansfield Sports Recognition Awards.
“It has been my most successful season,” she smiled. “I jumped well at the English Schools, which is the biggest competition I can do at the moment, and came fourth which I was pleased with.
“I also regained my indoor and outdoor Midlands Championships titles.
“I had a good winter’s training season that made me a lot stronger and faster. I know I can jump a lot further than before.
“I just want to keep improving my technique, jump further and win as many titles as I can. I want to keep myself in the top few in the country – I am currently ninth in my age group – and I should get into the top 10 in the university championships.
“Next season I want to jump over 12m – that’s the big target. I have jumped 11.74, but I am jumping quite well in training and I have managed 12.20 quite a few times. I now just need to take one of those big jumps into a competition. I think it’s probably going to come next year.
“It’s been a good year. Everything is falling into place. I am getting ready to go to university and I want to keep training hard and go to university and word hard and do the best I can. I want to be the best I am capable of.”
Beth is now edging her way towards full adult competition, though will get a transitional year next year as she still qualifies as an U20.
“I will still be an U20 next year due to when my birthday falls, but I will be in university competitions up against opponents up to three or four years older,” she said.
“I jump for Notts AC and this summer we won promotion to the UK WAC Premier league for the first time in 100 years. So next season I will be up against the best in the country in the top division of the UK women’s league which will be good.
“I have jumped against some of the best in the country already so I am looking forward to it and I know what to expect.”
She added: “I do take part in fill-in events at league meetings where I do long jump, high jump and the shot just to try to get us points. But I just train for the triple jump.
“I used to jump for Mansfield Harriers but they don’t have much of a track and field team at the moment, so I moved to Notts AC almost two years ago and I have had two full seasons with them. I started with Mansfield when I was 11.”
The dream all athletes have of Olympic competition is certainly there for Beth, but she remains level-headed and realistic about her ambitions, taking things a step at a time.
“It’s always something every athlete aspires to. I just want to see how far I can go. I will keep working hard and see where it takes me. I want to get a good technique and see how far I can possibly get and we’ll take it from there.”
Beth is hopeful she will be able to study at Nottingham University where she would be able to combine her studies with training with Notts AC.
Beth is coached by local coach, Pete Gorrill, trains with Nigel Kesteven’s jumps squad at Notts AC; and is sponsored by The Sterry Foundation and Mansfield Councillor, Stephen Garner.