Taske aims to go higher
ATHLETICS: Meet the junior who can almost jump higher than his height.
Bundaberg's Liam Taske might be small in stature but when it counts he certainly knows how to jump over a high jump bar.
The 11-year-old Wide Bay athlete won gold at the recent state school athletics titles in Brisbane.
He won with a jump of 1.49m on countback over Metropolitan East's Josh Dudley.
Taske took the title after completing the jump with his first attempt.
"I'd been consistent with my jumps and didin't fail a single one (up until 1.49m),” he said.
"We then went up to 1.52m and I almost got that but I just clipped the bar.”
The win caps off a pretty significant rise up the rankings for Taske.
The St John's Lutheran School student beat last year's second and third placed finishers with his mark that was also a personal best.
The main reason for the success was a simple technique change by his coach John Routledge.
"I went to my first state athletics championships doing scissoring (technique),” he said.
"And then last year I went into flopping and I started jumping higher and higher.”
The sky is the limit now for Taske with the junior off to the Pacific Games later this year in Adelaide.
He gets to wear the maroon for the first time in competition.
"I can't wait to go but it will be really expensive,” he said.
"I hopefully will go as far as I can.
"One day the ultimate goal will be to be in the Olympics.”
Helping him to achieve the goal is his coach.
Routledge said the goal was to get Taske jumping to 1.55m by the event.
"He's come along in leaps and bound over the past 12 months,” he said.
"The key will be keeping his run up more accurate as he's striving to get up and over the bar.
"He's going to need to do a lot of practice between now and then to be ready.”
Taske will compete at the games from December 3 to 9.