Bethan’s oarsome skills – Hartlepool teen is latest nominee for sports awards

Bethan Kelly at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.
Bethan Kelly at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.

A YEAR of transition has not stopped Bethan Kelly from shining in sport and in the classroom.

The 17-year-old from Hartlepool is climbing through the ranks of Britain’s elite in canoeing and kayaking.

Bethan Kelly at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.

Bethan Kelly at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.

Her progress comes at the same time as she has shone in her studies at Hartlepool Sixth Form College where she has made a great impression as a model student.

Her fantastic attitude and performance levels have led to her being nominated for the Young Sports Personality of the Year category of this year’s Hartlepool Mail sports awards.

Her nomination, from the college’s sport maker Joe Cooke, said: “Bethan has made an exceptional start to life at college, and has progressed so much over the past 12 months”.

Bethan is studying English literature, history and religious studies at A-level, alongside excelling in both kayaking and canoeing.

Bethan Kelly

Bethan Kelly

Joe said: “She trains 10 times a week on and off the water and competes regularly across the UK.

“Although Bethan has had to adjust to the transition from school to sixth form, her canoe slalom and kayaking performances have gone from strength to strength.

“Bethan is in the national women’s Premier division for both kayaking and canoeing.

“For the last three years, Bethan has also been selected to compete for England in the International Pan Celtic Cup series against Scotland, Wales and Ireland. She has done incredibly well to maintain such an elite level in her chosen sport, along with sitting her A-levels”.

Bethan’s mum Lorraine said: “We’re very proud of Bethan.

“She has done well this season.

“She was seventh in the English Championships in May and has just secured the points she needed to stay in the women’s slalom Premier Division for 2015.”

We have already had entries from all types of sport but we want more. The competition closes for entries on Friday. Then it’s over to the judges to draw up a shortlist before the glittering finale in October. That means there’s still time for you to come forward with your favourites.

• Click here for a nomination form