Falmouth student on the way to London 2012
Ala Mallinder studying the Watersports Instructor NVQ2 course at Falmouth Marine School has been selected for the England Olympic Kayak team for 2012.
Ala's journey to be selected onto the Olympic team began in April when she attended the Indoor Rowing Championships in Eaton, taking part and winning the rowing machine event. A week later back home in the Lizard, Ala received a letter from the Olympic Kayaking Squad asking if she wanted to try out for the sprint kayaking team. Ala, 17, was deemed too small to try out for the rowing team but her performance impressed the selectors who thought her perfect for kayaking.
Coming up to the end of her first year on the Watersports Instructor NVQ2 course at Falmouth Marine School, Ala is familiar with a range of watersports including kayaking. Tutors on the course give all students constant and active encouragement on and off the water to help them achieve their best. Ala's tutors in particular have given her plenty of advice and guidance regarding important issues such as sponsorship and training.
In mid April, she, along with 95 hopefuls selected out of an initial group of 1200, attended the four day trial and training at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham. The trial included going through all the stages of all types of kayaking to find out which event would fit her best.
Last week Ala found out that she had been selected for the K4 England Team. If she decided to take up the place, she will put on a fast track training course to get her ready for 2012.
Phil Sanger one of Ala's tutors, who has been working with her since she started the course in September said: "This is fantastic for Ala and could open up many more opportunities for her along the way. If she can remain as focused as she currently is for the next few years, the England team will have a good chance of getting the medals for Kayaking. We are 100 % behind her all the way."
Ala said: "I'm really pleased and excited to have been selected. I want to finish my course at Falmouth Marine School and hope to fit my training in around my lessons until I can dedicate myself to it full time."
John Latham, Principal of Cornwall College commented: "This is great news. It is great that Ala's course has given her the chance to represent her country at the most prestigious sports event in the world. We all wish Ala the best of luck for the next four years and of course in London in 2012."