HE is only 10 years old, but Tuqiri Mason has the world at his feet – literally.
The Westport Public School student qualified for the state athletics finals in Sydney in mid-October with a strong performance in the Lower North Coast zone finals.
He blitzed the field in the 100-metre and 200-metre events in Coffs Harbour on September 1 to earn his place through to the next round.
Recently retired superstar Usain Bolt holds the world record in the 100-metre sprint in a time of 9.58 seconds.
While the youngster isn’t that quick just yet, he still completes the 100-metre dash in a more than respectable time of 14.50 seconds.
He didn’t have too many competitors who came close in Coffs Harbour, but he knows the state titles will be a different prospect.
For a year three student, who knows how quick he could end up being in years to come?
“I went pretty good in Coffs Harbour – I did a bit over 14 seconds for the 100 and did the 200 in 28 seconds,” Mason said.
Using those stats on their own suggests he doesn’t get slower the longer the distance.
“I prefer the 100 the most because I’m better at it. I’m more of a 100 person because it’s more short distance,” he said.
“I don’t really lose pace after 100 metres.
“I still came first in the 200 metre race, but I didn’t beat the record so I’d like to beat that in Sydney next month.”
He admitted he has friendly competition against his older brother, who can’t beat him over the shorter distance.
“I’m faster than my brother and he’s 18,” he said.
“I haven’t been running for long, I’m 10 so I’ve only been doing it for a couple of years.”
He knows it will be challenge going up to the next level against some of the quickest sprinters in the state on October 18 and 19.
“I know they’ll be better,” he said.
“A top three finish will get me into nationals, I reckon I’m a chance – I’ll hopefully come first.”
The youngster has set up a gofundme page to raise the $1500 for accommodation around Sydney Olympic Park.
To help out, head to https://www.gofundme.com/tuqiris-sydney-state-athletics.