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Joe goes for gold in the British Modern Biathlon Championships

Student Joe Groves is training hard as he prepares to represent Havering Sixth Form College in the British Schools & Colleges Modern Biathlon Championships at Crystal Palace later this month.

Joe will take on students from schools and colleges nationwide on March 18th in the Under 17s Modern Biathlon, which comprises a 200m swim and a 1600m run.

Joe, 16, from Upminster, who is currently studying the BTEC Double Award in Science and is hoping to study Sports Science BTEC Certificate and Engineering BTEC Diploma next year, qualified for the championships when he competed in the Eastern regional event in October.

He came agonisingly close to retaining the Eastern Region title for the 3rd time as he missed out on the Gold Medal by 2 points - equivalent to 0.2 secs in the pool or 0.4 secs on the track!

It is the combined score in both events that decides where an athlete is placed. Joe came 9th in Britain last year when he competed for his former school, Coopers Company & Coborn. He is hoping this year to improve on this as he swims and runs for Havering Sixth Form College.

A member of Romford Town Swimming Club which meets at the Abbs Cross Health & Fitness pool, Joe trains six or seven times a week, balancing his studies and his work as a part-time Lifeguard at the new Sapphire Ice & Leisure Centre in Romford.

Paul Nutter, Deputy Principal, said: “We are all keeping our fingers crossed for Joe that he achieves his goals at the British Schools & Colleges Championships. It is a wonderful achievement to have qualified for the third year running.”