Dartford Grammar School

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Kai Barham (Yr11) named as Kent best male junior athlete for 2021

The 2021 Kent County Athletics Association (KCAA) annual President's Award Dinner was held on Friday 5th November and we are very proud to report that Kai Barham in Year 11 won the award for the best male junior athlete for 2021. At a dinner held at the Weald of Kent Golf Club, in Ashford, the President summed up the reasons why Kai was the worthy winner, and we can do no better than reproduce (with licence) his words here:

'Throughout my time as KCAA president ... I have spent a considerable amount of time presenting Kai with medals and trophies.

For 2021 he has enjoyed an unbeaten year as a 1st year under 17, now throwing the 5k hammer. During the course of the season he won an impressive selection of gold medals in the South of England U17 Championships, the English Schools Championships, the England U17 Championships, the UK School Games and the SIAB Schools Home International where he made a successful debut in the U17 team. He also made his debut for England at the English Schools Throw Fest, where the minimum entry target was so challenging that he was the only UK U17 athlete to achieve it.

In terms of distance, he started the season with a throw of 56.30m at Lee Valley in June, and progressed steadily to 63.48m at the Dartford Harriers Club Championships in September, finally extending that to 65.36m in the last competition of the season in Hull. He is very comfortably number one in the Power of 10 rankings, and the only U17 male athlete to exceed the  UK10 target of 58m. 

In addition to his hammer exploits, he completed a small number of shot put competitions where his best throw of 15.04m in May put him narrowly ahead of the UK10 target of 15m. Incredibly, he also won the weight throw trophy at the Hammer Circle Reunion Competition, beating Taylor Campbell who competed for Team GB at the Tokyo Olympics this year. 

Kai Barham has high aspirations and continues on the right track, setting himself challenging targets for 2022. He is the winner of the KCAA best male junior athlete for 2021.' 

We congratulate Kai on this amazing achievement, won for a year which was made difficult by Covid restrictions and therefore required a special sort of dedication and focus. 

See more photos of Kai at http://www.kcaa.org.uk/social.htm#2019 where you will also note that another Old Dartfordian, Adam Gemili,  featured as KCAA Kent Male Athlete of the year in 2019!

For more on UK Power of 10 targets, see https://www.thepowerof10.info/aboutpowerof10/