Fifteen Dwarf Sports Association UK (DsaUK) members from Scotland have returned home from the 24th National Dwarf Games in Birmingham with a haul of 79 medals – 45 of which were gold.
The competition, held last weekend, saw the Scots compete in powerlifting, track and field, sprints, relays, discus, shot putt, Javelin and cricket ball and Frisbee throwing.
This was followed by hockey, football and basketball, New Age curling, cycling, swimming and football.
One of the Scottish members, Merryn Binnie, received the Dsauk “Young Sportswoman of the Year 2017” trophy for her outstanding performance.
Amongst the winners – who now hope to compete in the 7th World Dwarf Games in Guelph, Canada, this August – were Fife brother and sister Finlay and Skye Davidson, from Inverkeithing.
The siblings, who train with Disability Sport Fife, have achondroplasia, which means they are around half the size of their friends the same age.
Despite their short stature, the pair have always been focused on their ability — not their disability.
Finlay, 12, returned with a medal for every event he entered – four golds in the 60m sprint, 40m sprint, 60m relay and javelin, and five bronze medals in shot-putt, cycle race, football, hockey and basketball.
Skye, 7, returned with eight medals – six golds in the 20m sprint, 10m sprint, cricket ball throw, 10m swim, football and hockey; one silver in cycling and one bronze in the frisbee throw.
Their mum Hailey, 38, who is DsaUK regional leader for Scotland, also decided to compete for the first time and, having given herself just 11 weeks to train, returned with a haul of three gold and two silvers.
“As you can imagine it was a very busy weekend,” Hailey, who also has dwarfism, told The Courier.
“As a region we came third in the regional awards and we were also presented with the “Do Something Amazing” trophy, for our efforts in fundraising for DSAuk.
“Throughout the weekend we also had the fantastic company of Ellie Simmonds, our patron. Having her join in on the sports, presenting medals and even just being able to chat more to her gave everyone a real boost.
“Not only did each athlete give it their all, they also showed determination, skill and true sportsmanship supporting everyone from the youngsters, to the competition. I am a very proud team leader to say the least!”
This was the second national games that Scotland has competed in as a region – and the haul of 79 medals including 45 golds was up considerably on the 51 medals including 21 gold won last year.
Funding remains the main obstacle for the five Scots – including her children – hoping to compete in Ontario in August as part of Team GB with athletes taking part needing at least £2,000 to attend.
Anyone wishing to donate can do so via www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/FinlayandSkyetakeontheWorlds.
President and Founder of Dwarf Sports Association UK, Arthur Dean has seen many people transform their lives through sport.
He said:”This organisation has played a major role in breaking down the barriers of difference in society towards people with dwarfism.
“It all began with six members and now boasts over 600.
“Seeing these young people develop in their lives as well as in sport is so rewarding and well worth the 24 years of team work.”
DSAuk and The National Dwarf Games has a long history of supporting athletes on their pathway to national, international and Paralympic sporting success.
DSAuk Patrons Ellie Simmonds OBE, fellow swimmer Matt Whorwood, and powerlifter Zoe Newson have all competed at the National Dwarf Games early in their sporting careers, and have since gone on to compete at international and Paralympic level.