ATHLETICS: When The Daily Examiner met Palmers Island student Jaylan Morris this week, the youngster appeared more nervous about his first plane ride than competing at the New South Wales Primary Schools Sports Association Athletics Championships.
Jaylan will represent his school, and the North Coast, in the shot put event when he lines up in Sydney today.
"I'll just try to throw it as far as I can," he said.
The 10-year-old has won or placed at every regional or zone competition he has contested this year but said he has improved in recent times with practise.
"Most days we get the shot put, walk down to the oval near our house and mark out a circle for him to practise," mum Liz Cavanagh said.
"I'm really excited to see him in the event."
No matter what the outcome is, his mum and grandfather Avery Brown - who helped him fundraise for the trip to Sydney - will remain his biggest fans.
"As a mum, to see him succeed in an individual event like shot put makes me very proud," Liz Cavanagh said.
"He's had to face his own nerves and do it all himself."
Palmers Island State School principal Ellie Wiseman said the entire school community was behind Jaylan.
"We're really proud of him, he's been putting in a huge effort practising at school and taken a shot put home so he could practise," Ms Wiseman said.
"It's just a really great achievement for anyone, but particularly a student from a small school."