Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 10.26.47A SCHOOLGIRL athlete is proving to be a bolt from the blue when it comes to sprinting after a string of successes at the highest level.

Barnard Castle School student Rachel Bennett has been ranked 6th in the country for the U15 Girls’ 200m despite often running against competitors much older than herself.

This year the 13-year-old, of Newton Aycliffe, has claimed a series of medals. These include silvers at the 60m Northern U15 Indoor Championships and 200m U15 Scottish Indoor Championships and bronzes at the 200m Northern U17 Indoor Championships and English National Indoor Championships.

Rachel said: “I have been running since I was nine and am a member of Shildon Running Club specialising in 100m and 200m.

“So far this year I am pleased with my medals and am looking forward to competing again in July with the hope one day of running for my country at an Olympics.”

PE teacher Andy Woodward said: “Rachel’s quiet determination is an example to us all of what can be achieved with commitment and hard work. She thoroughly deserves her success and I’m sure will go on to achieve even more in the future.”