ATHLETICS: Wragby Father and son live life in the fast lane

Kieran and Jim Gillespie EMN-140728-084124001
Kieran and Jim Gillespie EMN-140728-084124001

There is no shortage of competition in the Gillespie household in Wragby but fortunately, it’s all good family fun.

Dad Jim (52) is something of a veteran when it comes to sport.

He recently set an Irish Masters record in the pentathlon, which features the long jump, javelin, 200m, discus and 1500m - in the space of two days.

Not to be outdone, Jim’s 14-year-old son Kieran is following a proud family tradition.

He’s the Lincolnshire sprint hurdles champion and has represented his county in the pentathlon.

Kieran’s just been selected for county duty in the hurdles and shot putt in the National Games at Derby next month.

Jim told the News: “I’ve got so much enjoyment from athletics over the years so it’s great to see Kieran doing so well himself.

“He really enjoys his sport and I’m more than happy to encourage him.”

Jim was a PE teacher for many years at Cherry Willingham School but is now a personal trainer based in Wragby.

His background in athletics saw him become an international competitor from the age of 16 - competing in the hurdles, and 400 metres. More recently, he has taken on the challenge of the pentathlon and the even more demanding decathlon.

Jim, who was born in Ireland, said: “I currently hold six national masters records in various age groups, the most by any athlete in Irish Masters athletics history.

“At the other end of the scale, it’s Kieran’s first serious season in athletics.

“Obviously I am really proud that he has been selected for the county - as well as being county champion in the sprint hurdles.”

Jim admitted he still loves training and competing although his career hasn’t always gone to plan.

He added: “I was selected for the 4x4 in 1988 Olympics but didn’t get to go because they pulled the funding. You get highs - and lows. That’s sport.”