The big moment has come for Stonehaven’s Kelsey Stewart as she heads to Gold Coast in Australia with Team Scotland this week.
The 21-year-old 4x400m runner told the Leader this week how grateful she was for all the help she had received as she prepares to enter the biggest stage of her athletics career.
“I head off to the Commonwealth Games on Friday and I want to thank everyone who has played a part over the years in getting me to where I am now,” she said.
“I started in the sport through the cross-country team at Mill O’ Forest Primary School and had great support in my time at Mackie Academy.
“I have also had a couple of donations from the Stonehaven Lions Club in the past year which has helped me greatly.
“Lots of people have stopped me in the street to say well done on my selection and to wish me the best, which means a lot. It’s great to have such a supportive community around me.
“The 4x400m heats are on April 13 and the final is on April 14 if we safely make our way through the heats.”
Kelsey explained her build-up to the event. “When I get over there I go to a holding camp which is essentially a training camp until April 9 in the Sunshine Coast.
“After this, I will travel to the Gold Coast and move into the Athletes’ Village.
“Most people will move into the Athletes’ Village a few days prior to this but as I am competing so late in the programme this minimises the risk of illness which travels like wildfire in the Athletes’ Village and allows me to train as normal.
“Unfortunately I only have one day of free time at the end before flying home as I have to get home for university exams and more competitions.
“The university have been really supportive of everything though so I am lucky.”
In a pre-Games boost, Kelsey was named top Adult Female 18+ by the Aberdeenshire Sports Council at their annual awards at the Garioch Sports Centre, Inverurie, last Friday evening.
Report on Page 31