Despite a slow start Hendre Kirchner turned his Oceania Athletics Championships javelin performance around to throw a personal best and place second.
Representing Australia for the first time in Under 18s javelin Hendre said it was a wonderful feeling to put on the green and gold uniform let alone taking his place on the podium.
“It was exciting,” Hendre said.
“It’s kind of unreal.
“It’s always good to throw personal bests.
“It means you keep going forward.”
While he found it hard to find the perfect words to describe the feeling he said he was “very grateful” and “blessed”.
Mayor Jack Dempsey congratulated Hendre on his Oceania Athletics Championship achievement representing Bundaberg and Australia.
“This is a wonderful result for young Hendre who has done the entire Bundaberg Region proud,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“He is continuing the fine sporting tradition of our region which is known as a breeding ground for elite athletes.
“And that’s not to mention the sporting legacy of his own family including his extremely talented younger brother Jano and his father Len who is a cricket coach.”
He said the experience of being on the Australia team had been extremely rewarding.
“I’ve had so much support from friends and family and coaches.
“They’ve given us a lot of support with the team. I couldn’t have done it without all the support.”
Taking to the podium with fellow Aussie Bryce Cooper in first place Hendre said he had enjoyed meeting other athletes at the Oceania Athletic Championships.
“We’ve all become pretty good friends and got to know each other.
“They’re all supportive.”
Lack of nerves leads to slow Oceania Athletics Championship start
Hendre was relieved he was able to reach his personal best in his second last throw after a slow start.
“I threw 51 m and in the 40s which are like warm up throws almost.
“I wasn’t feeling the pressure in the first four and in the fifth one I kind of had to pull myself together a bit and talk to one of the coaches and get myself psyched up a bit.
“I wasn’t getting nervous yet, later on in the competition I got a little bit more nervous.
“Nerves are really good to have because you get an adrenaline rush and it helps you to compete better.”
Hendre is now looking forward to watching fellow Bundaberg competitor Taryn Gollshewsky compete in discus this evening.