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Kukri Sports is proud to announce that one of its Youth Talent Programme Ambassadors has been chosen to represent Team England at this year’s highly anticipated Commonwealth Youth Games.

Jess Bailey, who will be competing in the 3000m, has been confirmed as one of 31 athletes who will represent Team England on the islands of Trinidad and Tobago from 4-11 August.

The competition will provide a global platform for Jess to showcase her skills and compete against some of the finest, young athletes in athletics.

Reflecting on the news, Jess said, “I am very grateful for the opportunity, and hope to do my country proud.

“It’s been a long road since picking up a stress fracture in my foot last year. I had 6 weeks in a cast and 4 weeks in a boot and I had lost all my confidence after I began cross training again in February.

“I thought it would take at least a year to re-gain full fitness and get back to where I was. Fortunately, I was wrong, I spent several months just focusing on what I could control and on the little things, and now less than five months since my boot was removed, I have been selected to represent my country in Trinidad & Tobago.”

Raised in a sports-oriented family, Jess was exposed to various sports from an early age. Starting with gymnastics and netball, she later discovered a passion for running.

Reflecting on her athletics journey so far, Jess expressed, “I have loved my time in athletics so far, and although there have been ups and downs, overall, it has been such a positive journey. The adrenaline from racing and the feeling of pushing yourself to the limit is unbeatable.

“Through running, I have been fortunate enough to travel to Thailand, Italy, Israel, and Ireland. Those experiences have been amazing, I have made friends around the world and have had opportunities to experience different cultures I never would have had the chance to see otherwise.”

Looking ahead to the future, Jess is determined to let her training do the talking and will continue to stay grounded, “Training and competing in this sport is one of the things I love most in life, and to get to do that every day would be such a privilege.

“I would love to be a professional runner and compete internationally as a senior. For now though, I’m just going to keep training hard, enjoy the process and not take anything for granted.”

Kukri would also like to congratulate its other YTP Ambassadors on their achievements so far this year. Amy Thompson equalled her personal best in the Women’s Under-18s shot put at this year’s Loughborough Pathway International with 7.94m, which is a world paralympic consideration standard.

Amongst other achievements, Kai Barham was crowned Under-20s Hammer Thrower Men’s Champion at the England Athletics Under-23 and Under-20 Championships in Chelmsford.

Gracie Wall was also victorious in the Championships, winning the Women’s Under-20 High Jump gold medal with a winning jump of 1.78 metres, a personal best that pushes her to third place in this year’s UK Under-20 rankings.

Gracie, who has achieved the qualification standard for the British Championships and will now be competing this week in Manchester, reflects on her journey so far with immense pride, “I have always watched athletics on the TV and participated in a few events in PE at my Primary School.

“I joined an athletics club at the age of 7 and tried all the events, but began high jump when I was 10. Since then, I have competed and focused on high jump, continuing to improve and develop my performances, all whilst enjoying the opportunities the sport gives me and loving the journey with my coach and friends.

Looking ahead, Gracie has ambitious goals for her future in high jump, “My main aim and aspiration is for my performances to be recognised and rewarded by being selected for Great Britain. I want to challenge myself and deliver high-quality performances on a bigger stage.

“By having clear goals of the heights and aspirations I want to reach, this gives me an incentive and motivates me. Along with success, challenges also feed motivation – all these factors drive me more to achieve my goals and be the best version of myself.”

Kukri is proud to support all our Youth Talent Programme Ambassadors and would like to congratulate them on their achievements so far this year.

As the countdown to the Commonwealth Youth Games begins, Kukri will continue to support Jess in her preparations, ensuring she has the necessary resources to compete at her best.

With a strong commitment to youth development and whilst empowering the next generation of athletes, Kukri remains dedicated to achieving excellence in sports worldwide.

We would like to wish all our YTP Ambassadors the best of luck in their competitions for the rest of the year.

Click here to read find out more about this year’s Commonwealth Youth Games.

Click here to find out more about our YTP Ambassadors.