Blaxland runner Andrew Laycock will compete in the Australian All Schools Cross Country Championships this month.
The 15-year-old qualified after winning the under 15s 4000m in 13 minutes 8 seconds at the NSW All Schools Cross Country on July 26 at Eastern Creek.
He's looking forward to the national competition at Wollongong from August 23-26, and is expecting some tough competition from track runners on the mostly flat, purpose-built grass course.
"It's a speed race," the Blaxland High student said.
"I'm hoping to get up there with the front pack and sit up there and make a kick at the end."
Andrew has been coached by Dani Andres from Pulse Performance for the past 18 months, travelling to Lilyfield twice a week for training. His times are getting quicker, including shaving 30 seconds off his 3000m track time.
In June he thought he'd have a go at the Western Sydney Marathon 10km event. He hadn't prepared for the race but surprised himself to finish second in 33:09, just 30 seconds behind winner Jacob Crews.
Andrew is also a top performer at the 2000m steeplechase and 3000m, and will compete in the NSW All Schools Track and Field Championships in Sydney in September, where he hopes to qualify for the Australian All Schools Track and Field Championships in Perth in December.
"If I could do cross country all year round I would," he said.
Last year Andrew was second at the Australian All Schools Cross Country Championships held in Maleny, Queensland.
"There were lots of hills and I loved it," he said.