On Tuesday 6th February, T44 100m and 200m Paralympian, Laura Sugar visited Scampton Primary School to support the school’s Disability Awareness Day alongside other very exciting and inspirational guests. We think that Laura’s favourite guest may have been Saxon, a local hearing dog that was visiting with his owner to share stories about how he supports people with hearing impairments!

The day began with a fantastic introduction from Mr Hebborn before handing the school assembly over to Laura to share her sporting journey with the students and staff. Laura explained how being born with Talipes has not held her back at all and she now thrives on the competition that the para athletics world has brought her. Laura spoke of the importance of overcoming challenges, giving examples of those that she has had to contend with, before going into greater detail about the various categories within para – sport.

It was soon time for Laura’s coaching sessions to begin. Throughout the day, the four houses came to the European Silver Medallist for a masterclass in sprinting. On her birthday eve, Laura absolutely loved her rendition of “Happy Birthday” from St Luke House to kick start the third session of the day. Each group ranged in age from Reception through to Year 6 and it was wonderful to see the support that the older students gave the younger years in the breakdown of the sprint starts or improving running technique.

Laura led a dynamic warm up followed by the session itself which saw great improvement across all year groups throughout the day. Helpful hints and tips from the Rio Paralympian were well received by students and staff alike and we look forward to hearing how the various techniques have been implemented into a successful sports day later in the year.

Laura was extremely impressed with everyone and she had medals for the students that took on board her advice and had a great attitude throughout their session. There is always time for photos and autographs when it comes to a Mintridge Ambassador, which everyone loved to finish on. Laura had a little surprise for everyone as she pulled her European and Grand Prix medals from her bag, these were passed around each house as Laura answered the questions that everyone had prepared. There were some brilliant questions highlighted below:

  • “Where do you keep your medals?”
  • “What is your fastest time for 100m?”
  • “What made you want to go to the Paralympics?”
  • “What’s your favourite race that you have ever run?”
  • “Who inspired you to get into sport?”
  • “Do you ever get nervous?”
  • “What do you eat before a race?”

Photos and the Mintridge video are with the school should you wish to see them.

Thank you very much to the staff at Scampton for welcoming us into your school for the day, we thoroughly enjoyed working with everyone. We look forward to seeing everyone again in the future.