Penny out to earn spot for Apia Games


TWENTY-four-year-old Michael Penny seems to be Athletics PNG’s best bet in the men’s 100m and 200m for the upcoming 2019 Pacific Games mid this year.
In a recent Athletics PNG selection trial at the National Sports Institute in Goroka, the East New Briton clocked 6.92 seconds in the 60m dash.
National athletics coach Dior Lowry was impressed with Penny’s performance and described him as the fastest at the trials and “the fastest in camp right now”.
“As per the IAAF scoring tables for performance, the most impressive would be sprinter Michael Penny,” Lowry said.
Penny also took part in the 300m and finished in a time of 35.01.
“Michael is going to be our best shot for the Pacific Games so we’re working very hard to get him ready.
Meanwhile, Penny who has been in the Athletics PNG training camp in Goroka since last November, said training had been good so far.
“Training has been good. I was sick before the trials but managed to recover and run,” Penny said.
“I’m happy with the progress and the results that I’m getting.
“It’s a privilege to be here in camp and it will be an honour if I make the final team for the Pacific Games because it’s a big event and its’ going to be my first time,” he added.
The youngster from Balada in the Bitapaka local level government had his first representative chance in 2017 during the Pacific Mini Games where he competed in the 100m and 200m.
Penny’s personal best in the 100m is 10.90 and 22.65 in the 200m and he hopes on one day being the national record holder for both events which are currently held by Peter Pulu 100m (10.40) and Theo Piniau 200m (20.97).
Coach Lowry said among all the 50 participating athletes, the elite athletes in camp in the likes of Toea Wisil, Peniel Richard, Ephraim Lerkin, Donna Koniel, Ronald Hure and Simbai Kaspar were all doing well.