Hackney make sporting history

Hackney is celebrating finishing 16th in the London Youth Games 2011- its highest ever finish.

Over 400 young people represented Hackney against 32 other London boroughs. Over 40 teams have competed across 27 sports since November 2010, culminating in the finals weekend at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre on 27 June – 1 July.

Hackney saw 36 teams finishing in the top twenty, 18 of which finished in the top ten. Hackney’s previous highest ever position was 23rd making this a really big improvement.

Team medals were won for weightlifting, girls basketball and adapted rowing. Thirty four individual medals across disability athletics, kayak sprint, kayak, slalom, sailing, rowing, judo, trampoline, indoor rowing disability swimming and weightlifting.

There were many outstanding team and individual performances throughout the Youth Games. The standout achievement came from the weightlifting team finishing 1st in London for the second year running and securing the title on a personal best for Omarie Mears in the boys event.

Kim Pham, gold medal winner said: "Winning is achieving & achieving feels great! It feels really good to have taken the weightlifting title 2 years in a row considering it was my last year so we was very keen on taking the trophy back-which we did!"

"It terms of competitors it does differ from other competitions because you have a lot of last minute entries meaning they are less experienced but in terms of my performance, it doesn t change what so ever. I still have to compete as if I was at the British Champs!"

"If young people were considering to take up a sports, I would say Weightlifting because its a very dynamic and unique sport. Keeps you fit, toned and strong! You get to travel far to go competitions and meet very interesting people."

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Hackney Council’s Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture said: “A huge well done to all of those that participated and helped Hackney achieve its highest finish ever – it really is a great achievement.”

Hackney is already on the look out for young people to join next years teams. Anyone interested in representing Hackney in the London Youth Games 2012 can go to the

The Council’s Leisure & Physical Activity Team on 020 8356 2230 also has information about getting involved and competing next year.

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