Beth?s fast start on the road to athletics success
THERE'S no doubt in the mind of Beth Van Der Waal what she hopes to achieve in athletics.
"I want to really test myself," the 17-year-old Woolgoolga High student says.
"However far running can take me, that's where I want to go."
Beth is a specialist at 400 metres and will take the next step in her career competing in two events at the National All Schools titles at Homebush next month.
She'll run in the individual event before backing up in the 4 x 400 metre relay.
"One of the relay team members I know plenty about," Beth laughed.
"Amanda Morris edged me out in the New South Wales All Schools 400 and I can use that run as a guide to how well I might go."
A second placing in the NSW CHS individual 400 has Beth hungry for her first outright victory.
"My best time is 57.6 and lowering that is a target."
Dreams of Olympic and Commonwealth Games are still a long way from Beth's sights.
"I have a wonderful coach in Bill Minnard but the city athletes have a distinct advantage," she said.
"They have immediate access to the latest training methods and a top level of competition every time they race."
Above all, city athletes have premium tracks to train and race on.
"I train at home at Corindi, on the beach and at the track at Toormina," Beth said.
"To reach the top, unfortunately, you have to go away."
She will go away this time to Homebush and whatever follows will be part of the adventure.
"My aim is to enjoy it," she said.
"Do well and see what develops."