For Angelica it’s all in the family genes

Angelica Mayer’s decision to give up gymnastics in 2015 and switch to athletics has turned out to be the best move she could have made.


At a trial afternoon in early 2016 at Giffnock North AC, just outside of Glasgow, Mayer, 13, impressed the coaches so much that she was soon competing for the club. A mere two years later, still aged only 11, she had secured her first Scottish national title, winning the U13 60m in 8.26 seconds.

At this year’s championships, she doubled her tally with victories in both the U13 60m (8.01) and 100m (12.43).

Selection for the World Youth Games in Sweden in June brought Mayer two further successes when she took gold in the 60m in 7.87 and then won the 200m in 26.06, a personal best since superseded by 25.93 two weeks ago.

She is currently ranked UK No 26 for the 60m, this in her first year at U15 level, and she is well within the top 50 for her other three events (she also has a wind-assisted long jump PB of 5.20m).

Mayer’s parents’ sports genes might have something to do with it — mum Bea was a distance runner and high jumper, while dad Tony played academy football for Celtic and represented Scotland at the 2003 European Maccabi Games — but it is no doubt that the tried-and-tested recipe of talent combined with solid hard work has been key to her remarkable progress.

“I do sprint training twice a week, long-jump on Sundays and a separate session of strength and conditioning,” said Mayer. “My target at every competition is the same. I just want to go faster, beat my PB and win.”

Mayer is now looking forward to her next challenge, the English national indoor championships in Sheffield in February and, without doubt, another exciting season ahead.



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