Good luck to Jack in Berlin

By Kirra Livingstone

IT HAS come as no surprise to hinterland athlete Jack Craig that he will be competing for Australia at the World Special Olympics this year.

The 20-year-old rising track star may have only just started training in athletics two years ago but even then he said he was going to appear at the Olympics.

Now he has been selected to travel to Berlin to represent Australia in the 200m, 400m and relay events.

He is also the only Sunshine Coast representative on the national team.

“A couple of years ago when he first started training, he said I’m going to represent Australia in the special Olympics and it came around two years later,” Jack’s mother, Tessa Craig, said.

“I can’t believe that it’s come around so quickly, I didn’t expect it to come around at all, but it did and I’m so proud of him.”

Jack joined the Special Olympics club based at the University of Sunshine Coast in 2020 and from there his Olympics endeavour began.

“He went to the Queensland Special Olympics Games, and he qualified for the national games in Tasmania last year,” Tessa said.

“He won a gold in the 400m track in Tasmania, and from there we got a letter saying that he qualified for the World Games.”

Jack predominantly competes in track events now, qualifying for his pet 200 and 400m event, but is a natural across a number of other sports..

“He didn’t actually know what he wanted to do he tried to do swimming because he knew someone from school who was in the special Olympics swimming, but he couldn’t do that at all,” she said.

“He tried a few different sports, and he did basketball, soccer and athletics, and then he found he was going further with the athletics, so he has mostly been focusing on that.”

Jack is training three days a week plus an extra day training with Tessa to complement his competition events every two weeks.

“The events get him race ready rather than just training, he’s participating in races quite often,” she said.

Tessa said Jack is extremely proud of his efforts so far in track but has always known he would represent Australia as an athlete.