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Olympic gold medal winner visits BGS

Girls at Bristol Grammar School got a first-hand insight into hockey at the highest level when former England and Great Britain hockey captain and Olympic Gold medallist Kate Richardson-Walsh OBE visited the School last Thursday (19 April).

Kate gave a fascinating presentation to hockey players in Years 9, 10 and the Sixth Form, where she shared some of her hockey playing experiences, including leading the GB hockey team to Olympic Gold in Rio 2016.

Year 10 student Holly said:

‘I really enjoyed the presentation; it was very engaging and gave us a lot of information about what it really was like to be an Olympic athlete. Kate Richardson-Walsh answered all of our questions, even the ones about food!’

After lunch, Kate travelled to Failand to lead coaching sessions with girls in Years 6, 7 and 8. All the girls were very excited to meet one of their hockey heroes and get some advice on their game from her.

Year 7 student Sophie said:

‘Kate Richardson-Walsh was such an inspiration to all the girls and we learnt so much from the drills and skills she taught us. It was a really memorable afternoon and she encouraged everyone to achieve their full potential.’

The visit was organised in conjunction with Squadkit, BGS’s kit suppliers, who Kate Richardson-Walsh works with as a Squadkit Performance Director, attending school events to support coaching and help inspire the next generation of sporting heroes to achieve their goals. 

Reflecting on the visit, Ruth Wintle, Head of Girls’ Hockey, said:

‘It was so inspiring for our students to meet GB Olympic gold medallist Kate Richardson-Walsh. Players in our U14 and U15 teams were treated to a highly motivating talk about what it takes to be successful in achieving personal goals and the little steps we can all take to get there. 

‘In the afternoon Kate coached 50 players from our U11, U12 and U13 teams – an experience they'll never forget. With the Hockey World Cup just around the corner and the Netball World Cup in 2019, Kate provided great encouragement for our players to become increasingly committed to girls’ sport at BGS.’

A huge thank you from all our hockey girls to Kate Richardson-Walsh for spending the day here at BGS.