Waimumu 10-year-old twins Jimmy and Maddie Taylor practise running together, but little did they know they would be winning at a South Island level together.
The twins attended the 2018 South Island Colgate Games in Timaru with the Gore Athletics Club earlier this month, where they both won their respective 1500m and 800m races.
The South Island Colgate Games are a three-day interclub athletics competition.
Their mother, Dale Taylor, admitted she was surprised to see them both do so well.
“Don’t get me wrong – we knew they would do well as they’re winning in Southland and I thought this was a good step up. We thought maybe top three or top five.”
Maddie won both her 1500m and 800m races quite convincingly, Mrs Taylor said.
Jimmy had a sprint finish in his 800m race.
“You could just see there was no way he was letting him [another competitor] win and actually because Jimmy was pushed so hard, he actually broke the South Island record.”
Jimmy beat the previous record of 2min 32.9sec with a time of 2min 31.63sec.
Despite the games being a South Island event, both Maddie and Jimmy competed against North Island athletes.
“There was a girl from Gisborne in Maddie’s race and a boy from Wellington in Jimmy’s.”
The pair practise with running coach Ricky Gutsell on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Gutsell said the pair did very well at the games.
“They are very competitive – they have a desire to win. It doesn’t matter whether they are training or [it’s] race day,” Gutsell said.