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Champion Athlete Keeps His Eye On The Prize

Kettering Science Academy is proud to count a champion hammer-thrower ranked 13th in the country among its staff.

Matt Bell, who works as part of the premises team, has been hammer-throwing for 20 years and was the British Champion for the under-17s, under-20s and under-23s.

Now aged 32, Matt is still working hard to stay on top of his game and trains nine times a week.

In the last two weeks alone, he has taken part in three competitions and he is working on his flexibility so that he continues to improve.

Matt said: "The highlight was definitely when I was told I'd been picked to represent the country when I was 16-years-old.

"When I was younger I was chasing the Olympic dream but you have to have funding. I also picked up a couple of injuries.

"But I've got plans for this season - for the last few seasons I've been working on my strength but this year I'm going to work on my flexibility and speed."

Athletics has been a big part of Matt's life since the age of 11, when a friend persuaded him to take part.

He soon showed a natural talent for hammer-throwing and from Corby Athletic Club, he moved to  his current club, Birchfield Harriers in Birmingham, which is one of the top athletic clubs in the country.

He has taken part in competitions across Europe and in 2007, he was ranked sixth in the country.

Matt said: "It's got to the point where I don't know I'd do without it because I have been hammer-throwing for more than half my life."