Catch Me If You Can – Taking It To The Max
Former schoolboy running champion Max Cater will have no problems going the distance when he makes his WTF World Championship debut in Russia this week.
The South London born, Southampton raised teenager graduated to WTF Olympic style taekwondo from kick boxing.
But athletics was also Cater’s forte and he has medals to prove it. “I was a good long distance runner at school and represented Hampshire a few times,” revealed the 17-year-old prospect, fighting at –54kg in Chelyabinsk.
“I mainly did 3000 metres but I also ran 1500 metres,” added Cater, talented enough to compete at the prestigious English Schools Championships.
“Obviously, I don’t do as much as I used to. But there is an indoor running track at the English Institute of Sport in Manchester where we do our conditioning sessions.
“That’s the best thing for me because I love running and get a chance to go on the track.”
However, he doesn’t intend running from the challenge when he starts his campaign against Singapore’s Ming Wei Ng,20, on Friday.
“I am excited and nervous at the same time,” added the Millwall born youngster. “It’s my first World Championships and I want to enjoy it.
“But it’s been an amazing transition from juniors to seniors. Not many juniors get this kind of chance so early in their careers.”
Cater, who won junior and senior Commonwealth titles last year plus gold medals in 2015 at the Bosnia and Swiss Opens, is just glad mum and dad, David and Clare, won’t be in Chelyabinsk.
“I want to perform at my best and I don’t want to let my parents down,” he explained. “I tend to perform better and have less pressure when they’re not watching.
“But they’ve helped me so much and I’d love to bring back a medal for them.” The biennially held Championships, which start tomorrow (Tuesday) have attracted 833 athletes from 147 countries.
Schedule (+4 hour time difference in Chelyabinsk)
May 12: -58kg Josh Calland (Liverpool)
May 13: -74kg Andrew Deer (Tamworth)
May 14: -68kg Ruebyn Richards (Nottingham)
May 15: -54 Max Cater (Southampton)
May 16: +87kg Mahama Cho (Stockwell)
May 17: -63kg Jordan Gayle (Manchester)
May 18: -80kg Damon Sansum (Elgin)
May 13: -48kg: Charlie Maddock (Stoke on Trent)
May 15: -53kg Georgia Barnes (Southampton); +73kg Bianca Walkden (Liverpool)
May 16: -73kg Jade Slavin (Consett)
May 17: -57kg Jade Jones (Flint)
May 18: -62kg Rachelle Booth (Wigan)