BlazeSports America recently competed at the National Junior Disability Competition in Iowa. There were three sporting events: archery, swimming, and track and field. Eight of our athletes qualified for nationals. BlazeBlog would like to take the chance to highlight on one of our youngest athletes, Collin Lancaster, who competed in all three events! Here is his personal story and experience in Iowa.
The first event that I participated in was archery. I enjoy competing in archery because it is different and it allows me to focus on my ability to concentrate. This year I moved up in levels and I got a new bow! I was so excited to use it at nationals. I received a total of 435 points from two distances. I shot from 20 meters and 10 meters. I do not get the chance to practice archery as much as I would like to, but I was happy with my results since it was the best I had done yet with a new bow.
Next, I competed in five swimming events: 50 Breast stroke, 50 Free, 50 Back stroke, 100 Free, and 25 Breast stroke. My favorite event to swim in is the 50 Free. It is my best event. I enjoy swimming because it really shows how strong my upper body is without my lower body. I have always enjoyed swimming with my brothers and cousins, but being able to compete allows me to swim on a different level. I still enjoy swimming for fun with my brothers, especially in the summer.
The last sporting event that I competed in was track and field. It was two very long days for me but it was my favorite event. Moving up an age group was very challenging for me, but it made me realize how much more I have to push myself. On the first day I set two personal records in the 800 and 100. The next day I raced in the 200 and 400. I set another personal record in the 400. My favorite part about track and field was competing with older and new kids.
My favorite thing about an individual sport is pushing myself to be the best that I can be. I can set my own pace. I like being apart of a team sport too because I like coming together with other kids with disabilities and competing against other teams, together. I am really glad I was able compete at the NJDC in Iowa. I was able to spend a lot of time with my parents, brothers, and grandparents. My favorite part was being with my family on the off time. We went to the field of dreams, which is somewhere I have always wanted to go! I can’t wait for next summer to see what I have accomplished.