North-east duo selected for Scottish athletes squad with Commonwealth Games their target

Zoey Clark.
Zoey Clark.

Two Commonwealth Games hopefuls have received a boost by being selected for the Scottish Athletics Supported Athletes’ squad.

North-east athletes Zoey Clark and Kelsey Stewart will receive specialist training as they look to secure spots on the plane to the Gold Coast next year.

Both are studying at the University of Aberdeen but have found a way to balance academic work with life on the track.

Clark, from Aberdeen, competed at the 2014 Games in Glasgow and is now in the final year of her chemical engineering masters.

She won gold in the 4x400m relay at the Under-20 European Championships in 2011 and at the Under-23 European Championships in 2015.

Clark, 22, has had some impressive results and has her sights set on some huge events in the next 18 months.

“Despite being injured for a large portion of last year, I still made significant progress in bringing my 400m times down and I’m hoping to continue that form into this year,” she said.

“There are other competitions such as the World Championships in London I’m aiming for this year, but running the qualifying standard for the Commonwealth Games may also put me in with a chance of selection.”

For Stonehaven’s Stewart, the call-up was more of a surprise.

At 19 years of age, she was preparing for the U23 European Championships.

Last year she claimed silver at the British Universities and College Sport (BUCS) Nationals in the indoor and outdoor 800m.

Stewart also won the 400m and 400m relay at the Scottish Universities Championships, breaking the record in both events.

This will be a step up for her but Stewart hopes she can repay the faith shown by the national governing body.

“There are so many high quality athletes in Scotland I really didn’t expect to be selected, but I feel I’m growing as an athlete each season and I’m really pleased Scottish Athletics see me as part of their vision,” she said.

“There is still a long way to go to make it to the Games, and the most important priority for the relay team is that we run the qualifying time.

“The most important thing I can do is concentrate on improving my personal bests and hope things go to plan.”