Within our refreshed event schedule, Canoeing and Rowing will both make their debut. Despite being  ancient methods of transportation, competitive participation in both sports is still relatively limited; our new indoor canoeing and rowing competition will provide athletes of all ages the chance to excel while competing on specialist machines, with hopes of boosting participation and youth interest within the two sports.

Amongst both the canoeing and rowing squads, plenty of talented young athletes can be found.

Rower Georgie McLenaghan will compete for Northern Ireland at this year’s event; the 14-year-old, from Garvagh, has a four minute personal of 1073 metres, the young athlete recently finding success by winning the Irish Schools Junior 15 Championship Eights in Limerick.

England North rowing will see Stockport’s Harry Stanyer compete. The 16-year-old boasts an impressive six minute personal best of 1659m, set at the 2018 Greater Manchester Games. He has an impressive sporting history, having won gold at the 2015 U13 English Indoor Rowing Championship at the Manchester Velodrome. Harry’s teammate Charlotte Craven, 16, is also a name to look out for. Charlotte, from Durham, recently finished fourth in her age group at British Rowing Indoor Championships.

England South teammates George Patten, 14, and Ellie Childs, 16, will no doubt be fierce competition in the rowing events. George, who is from Northampton, holds a four minute personal best of 2007m and is a double British Indoor Rowing champion in his age group, having taken home the gold in both 2015 and 2016. Plymouth based Ellie found glory earlier in the year, winning the women's team boat race at the National Junior Indoor Rowing Championships.

In canoeing, England North will face England South in what is set to be a great head to head. For the North team 16-year-olds Morgan Londesbro and Mackenzie Hyde are two athletes to watch out for. The Rotherham based boys have both achieved some great sporting accolades already; both members of Manvers Waterfront Boat Club, they recently won the Hull International Canoe Polo tournament with their team.

14-year-old Abigail Avery will compete for England South; from Teddington, she trains with the Royal Canoe Club and boats a 200m ergo personal best of 1:01. Abigail has a strong competitive history, having won gold in the Kayak Slalom London Youth Games (Europe's largest annual youth sporting event) for two years in a row.

Abigail’s teammate, Oscar Partridge, is a member of Truro Canoe Race Club and achieved a 500m personal best of 2:00 in a flat water sprint. Oscar describes his sporting highlight as completing the Three Lakes Challenge (conquering Windermere, Loch Awe and Lake Bala within 48 hours) topping the leader-board with a time of six hours and six minutes.

Wellington’s Tilda Huntingdon, also of England South, has an equally as impressive sporting record. The 16-year-old is a member of Exeter Canoe Club and took home gold at the South West Schools Kayaking Championships; Tilda and her partner were both sprint and marathon winners. With such a fantastic amount of talent on show at the School Games National Finals, this year’s event is not one to be missed! Don’t miss out- buy your tickets here.

Pictured above: Abigail Avery trains on the water