Self-taught shotput phenom competes this weekend in Colombia
COLOMBIA— Manitoulin shotputter Joseph Maxwell will be competing at the IAAF World Youth Championships as part of Team Canada in Cali, Colombia starting today (July 15) until July 19.
The 17-year-old Evansville athlete qualified for the world championships in shotput earlier this year at a competition at Western University in London where he threw 19.75 metres (the minimum qualifying distance was 18 metres).
“I’m in Toronto right now and I’m meeting up with the rest of the Canada team later tonight and flying out (to Colombia) tomorrow morning,” Joseph told The Expositor during a phone interview last Thursday. “We will be doing some training leading up to the event as well as taking in some sight seeing. The focus is pretty much on athletics, but it will be cool to see another part of the world and experience a different culture.”
“I’m really excited to be competing in my first international event,” continued Joseph. “I’ve competed at meets throughout North America, but this will be a first for me.”
Joseph said he already knows about half of his team through previous national and provincial meets, but is looking forward to meeting the rest of his teammates.
“One of the things I like best about events beyond competing is meeting new people and making new friends,” said Joseph. “I’m really looking forward to everything.”
Currently Joseph is in the top 10 in his division (under 18) for shotput throughout the world, and is hoping to excel at the world meet, while proudly representing Canada and his home, Manitoulin Island.
“I’m a little nervous, but mostly excited,” Joseph shared. “My parents are coming to cheer me on, which I am very happy about. It will be great to have their support.”
Manitoulin is also cheering you on, Joseph! Good luck!
Joseph will be one of 1,200 youth athletes from more than 1,500 nations competing at the games.
For a full list of events and more information about the IAAF World Youth Championships 2015 visit iaaf.org.