Team GB gold medallist Mark Lewis-Francis visits primary school pupils in Scarborough

Olympic sprinter Mark Lewis-Francis is put to the test during his visit to Hinderwell Academy.
Olympic sprinter Mark Lewis-Francis is put to the test during his visit to Hinderwell Academy.

An Olympic sprinter has swapped the track for the classroom to meet pupils from a primary school in Scarborough.

Just before half term children from Hinderwell Primary Academy, on Seamer Road, had the pleasure to meet Team GB medallist Mark Lewis-Francis.

Gold medallist Mark Lewis-Francis is given a super thumbs up.

Gold medallist Mark Lewis-Francis is given a super thumbs up.

The track and field athlete, who won gold at the 2004 Summer Olympics sprint relay in Athens, spent a day with pupils aged three to 11 to inspire the next generation of sporting stars.

PE Coordinator Rebecca Bentley said: “We are part of the David Ross Education Trust which supports sports within the school and each year we are sent an elite athlete to come to the school to meet the children and promote health and well-being.

“Last year we had football freestyler Dan Magness while this year we welcomed Mark Lewis-Francis.”

The athlete met pupils from all year groups.

He showed them his medals, assisted them during training and took part in activities that saw him race against the children.

At the end of the day he finished off his visit by holding an inspirational assembly.

Mrs Bentley added: “Throughout the entire day there was a real buzz around the school, it was just a great community event.

“Mark was fantastic, so down to earth and friendly. He wanted the best for the children, he gave them lots of tips and answered all their questions.

“The children absolutely loved it, some of them were saying things like ‘oh I didn’t know I could do that’.

“He encouraged them to get into sport and never give up.”

Key Stage 2 pupils will have the chance to put their skills and the advice given to them by their special guest into practice in July when they will compete in the David Ross Education Trust Summer Cup in Grantham.

The event is the highlight of the trust’s sporting calendar and will see Hinderwell pupils compete against other schools in athletics, swimming and hockey.