Victorian All-Star #2 – James Joycey

Meet James Joycey!

We decided to ask James some questions ahead of the 2017 Australian Athletics Championships to see what drives him as an athlete and a person…

Athletics Victoria: Hey James, thanks for joining us mate!
James Joycey: No worries guys!

AV: You’re quite built James…How old are you?
JJ: 17-year-old!

AV: Wow. And which club do you represent?
JJ: Doncaster Athletics Club

AV: How long have you been in the game for?
JJ: Around 6 years…

AV: So how did you get involved with Little Athletics?
JJ: I was with Kew Little Athletics from U11 until U15. I got involved with Little Athletics a little differently to most. In year 5 at school another guy was picked for the school district team for shot-put instead of me. This annoyed me, so Dad and I decided I should join up with a Little Athletics Club so I could train for shot-put to ensure something like this would never happen again. I eventually placed 5th at the State Championships for shot-put that year and my passion grew from there!

AV: Love the fire! And were your parents athletes?
JJ: My Dad was a high-jumper and footy player. He actually won a National title before me when he won gold at the Australian Masters in 2013 with a then State record.

AV: What do you love about shot-put?
JJ: I love the complex and highly technical nature of the throws. It’s such a complex puzzle and you get to a stage where everything feels prefect, you think you have it all together, only to find there is so much more to figure out. This constant challenge of piecing each aspect of the throw together is the reason why I love the throws.

AV: What was it like competing recently alongside Olympic medalists in the NZ “Big Shot” competition?
JJ: The “Big Shot” experience in New Zealand was incredible. The day before we competed we got to train with all the big throwers which was an extremely valuable session to see the different way in which people approach training. On the day of the competition I was in the U20 event which was the curtain raiser to the main show. Although I didn’t compete with the Opens over there, our competition was a very elite field featuring some of the best in the world for my age, which was just as good! Having a meet near the main street of Christchurch was insane in comparison to our normal competition venues. The atmosphere was electric due the to the large crowd and it definitely aided performance. It would be cool to see a similar thing adopted over in Australia. It really brings athletics to the people, which increases the general public’s knowledge of our great sport and also greatly helps the competitors.

AV: Sounds like it was a trip worthwhile! So as a thrower of multiple events, how has developing a preferred event progressed throughout your career? Is it a matter of preference, or a focus purely on the event in which you have has the most encouraging competitive results?
JJ: Initially in my athletics career my sole love was for the hammer-throw. My results for that event were on a State and National basis compared to my other events. I had a strong passion for the event, mainly due to the fast progression I could make in it, which shot-put could not compete with. As I have grown in size through the years, my potential for shot-put became more evident, as I was gradually improving largely due to the 10-week stint I had to do for my APS school season. At the end of last year I decided to train properly as a shot-putter, as well as a hammer-thrower, with the belief I could be very good at both. So at this stage I have an equal love for both events, however due to injuries, hammer-throw has taken a back seat. Largely my preference comes down to results. Although when I’m fit I do as much work for both.

AV:  It seems you have the perfect balance! So when you’re away form it all, what do you get up to for fun?
JJ: This year I’m in year 12 and have high aspirations/goals I would like to achieve at school. Between my large commitment to my athletics and my time spent at/studying for school, I’m left with limited downtime, which is something I’m perfectly fine with. I want to be the best at what I do and as a result I have mp issue with putting in the work in the circle, the gym or at school. So my time for fun and enjoyment is spent putting in the hard yards for my various endeavours, which I’m sure will work for in the end!

AV: No doubt it will James! Thanks for joining us mate…
JJ: My pleasure guys!

Catch James in the shot-put during the Australian Athletics Championships (Sunday 26th March – Sunday 2nd April).