By Tyler Parker
Following a breakout performance at the recent national track cycling championships, Sam Washington’s record-breaking performance has seen him announced as Emerging Athlete of the Month for February.
The young cyclist from Western Australia has had an impressive start to the year, breaking the National U17 2000m Pursuit record in a time of 2:14:09. A long time coming, Washington said the “record was always in the back of [his] mind” as he trained for the event, with the result signalling “a dream come true.”
Off the back of this result, Washington has been announced as part of the 2023 U17 Western Australia Junior Track Team, with his sights set firmly on the national track championships in April, to be held in Brisbane.
Inspired by Julian Alaphilippe and his attacking style of racing, Sam has long been on the bike, riding his first 50km as a five-year-old and his first 100km as a seven-year-old.
“I have been cycling for as long as I can remember, starting off with going for bike rides with my sister and father around WA and setting challenges each week and seeing if we can achieve them.”
Moving into club racing with X-Speed Australia Cycle Club in 2017, Sam has flourished on the track, continually progressing and pushing himself to achieve his best. This was recently recognised at his club, awarded the inaugural Murray Hall Patron’s Cup which celebrates the outstanding efforts and determination of riders at X-Speed Australia.
View this post on Instagram
Having “fallen in love with racing bikes”, Sam has plans to race across Europe this year as he seeks to further his career and bolster his opportunity to compete in the green and gold. Whilst cycling is a competitive venture for Sam, he hasn’t lost sight of what’s important.
“My future goal in the sport is to have as much fun as possible, with some results if I’m lucky. Cycling is a social sport, and I will try to keep it that way as I move through the cycling ranks.”
This attitude carries into Washington’s everyday life, with Sam enjoying time with his friends and family, either “going to the beach, eating something or just driving around.”
Commonwealth Games Australia (CGA) has a focus on supporting emerging talent and celebrating the next generation of Australian sport stars.
Over the course of 2023, an athlete will be recognised each month as the Commonwealth Games Australia emerging athlete of the month and will receive a $500 gift certificate as a contribution towards their training expenses.
Three finalists from the monthly winners will be invited to the 2024 Commonwealth Games Australia Presidents Function where one will be named the Commonwealth Games Australia Emerging Athlete of the Year.
The annual winner, selected by the Awards Sub Committee will receive a $5000 CGA scholarship toward their sporting career.