On Friday at the School Games National Finals, para World Record holder for F38 discus, Michael Jenkins (17) from Pembrokeshire, Wales smashed his own record again and declared he is ready to compete with able-bodied and paralympic athletes at a world stage.
Michael threw a staggering 61.19m here and was 45m in front of his nearest competitor. If he were to compete at a world level, he would have finished 8th in the men’s discuss at the Commonwealth Games and would have achieved gold in the para-discus winning by 10m more.
Michael, said: “I always love coming to big competitions, it’s unbelievable to compete for your country and to obliterate your own record. It’s bizarre but brilliant.
“I want to go as far as I can able bodied, hoping for Europeans next year and I want to be an Olympian and Paralympian. See how far I can go in that. I’m gonna have a dominos, a large one to celebrate.”
Previously, Michael broke the world record at the Welsh Senior Championships in June which had stood since the London 2012 Paralympics and is about to compete in the School Games National Finals, the UK’s biggest multi-sport event for 13- and 18-year-olds.
On the path to lead the charge on a world level, Michael who has had cerebral palsy since birth has also faced anxiety and depression. He hopes to be a role model for others and that his journey can encourage more to step forward and achieve their potential.
The School Games National Finals, a four-day event led by children’s charity the Youth Sport Trust between the 1st to the 4th of September, will host 1,000 athletes at Loughborough University this year. It is renowned as a launching pad for athletes with former alumni, including Commonwealth Games medallists, Adam Peaty, Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Hannah Cockroft.
This year the event is taking place thanks to National Lottery funding from Sport England as part of the organisation’s Birmingham 2022 legacy investment. It provides the young athletes with first class facilities and the experience of being in a sport competition village akin to the Commonwealth Games.