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Geoff Capes backing his Great Yarmouth protégé Sophie Mckinna

PUBLISHED: 09:19 14 November 2010

Great Yarmouth shot putter Sophie Mckinna, who is coached by former Commonwealth champion, Geoff Capes.

Great Yarmouth shot putter Sophie Mckinna, who is coached by former Commonwealth champion, Geoff Capes.

Archant © 2009

Coach Geoff Capes believes his young protégé Sophie McKinna has what it takes to become as successful as he was.

Former Commonwealth and European champion Capes coaches 16-year-old McKinna, the British junior record holder.

“She can probably be as good as me. She’s a young girl that came to me two years ago,” he said. “She’s way ahead of her time. Provided she’s handled correctly and not mollycoddled I think she can go all the way to the top.”

Capes coaches several British shot putters and is hoping he is passing on some of the experience that won him 67 caps for Great Britain and two World’s Strongest Man titles.

“Because of her age she’s restricted in what she can and can’t do at the moment, she’s only just turned 16,” he added. “She’s so far ahead of anybody else in the county the difficulty would be finding the right competition, so I’m going to have to move her up to the seniors just to get her the right competition.

“I won’t be pushing her too hard too soon. Next year she’s got the European Youth Championships and the Commonwealth Youth Championships.

“It is an unusual event. It is a Cinderella event and it’s not looked upon as very feminine. But take it from me, Sophie’s a fantastic girl, she lives and breathes the sport, she’s quite articulate and I do think she can go a long way.”

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