Liverpool athletics ace Amy Thompson says a recent storm of personal bests is the hunger she needs to fuel her Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic journey.
The 17-year-old discus and shot-putter equalled her lifetime best at the recent Loughborough Pathway International in July and has a newfound level of desire ahead of the upcoming Welsh Athletics International.
And with Paris 2024 qualification arguably too much of a stretch for the young para-athlete, Thompson has already set her sights on an appearance at the 2028 event.
"I was recently given the chance to wear my first-ever England vest at the Loughborough Pathway International where I equalled by personal best," said Thompson, speaking with exactly one year to go until next year’s Paralympic Games.
The UK’s fourth-largest supermarket, Aldi, has entered into the second year of its Rising Stars programme with SportsAid by announcing the 18 talented young athletes receiving support in 2023.
Each athlete on the programme is provided with funding to help towards costs such as… pic.twitter.com/jiSUXpVK3w
— SportsAid (@TeamSportsAid) July 27, 2023
"That event was incredible for me because it felt like everyone was coming together as a team to help you achieve your goals.
"I was pretty consistent in that competition and I went in wanting a PB, so to equal it was brilliant.
"But my biggest aim in the sport is to make the team for the LA 2028 Paralympics.
"I'll still be quite young when Paris 2024 comes around, but I think my current form and watching the people I compete against go for it in Paris will really push me to get that ticket to LA in a few years’ time.
"It would be such an honour to call myself a Paralympian and I think I'll be old enough to achieve what I want to achieve there.
"In the short term, I'm back in the England vest again at the Welsh Athletics U20 International this weekend.
"I want another PB, I've done it in an England vest once, so I know I can and want to do it again."
Thompson is a member of Aldi’s Rising Stars programme, an initiative that supports 20 young athletes by providing a financial award to help with training and competition costs, while also delivering personal development opportunities to many athletes through workshop sessions.
— amy thompson (@amythomothrows) July 14, 2023
Inspired by para and able-bodied athletes on the field, Thompson is paving a relatively different path away from sport, with ambitions to join the NHS as a radiographer after college.
She added: "Being part of the Aldi Rising Stars programme is incredible, not only because of the funding but because of the experiences you get.
"It also allows me to meet so many people from different sports and go to competitions, like the one every year in Coventry where I see and get to meet a lot of para-athletes, like Jonnie Peacock and Hannah Cockroft which is really exciting.
"My main inspiration is Katarina Johnson-Thompson though, because she's from Liverpool and her first club Liverpool Harriers was also my first club.
"After college, I want to push for LA but I also want to go into the NHS and work in radiography.
"Because of my disability I've always found scans and that side of medicine really interesting, so I'd love to do that."
Aldi is the Official Supermarket Partner of Team GB and ParalympicsGB and have partnered with Team GB since 2015, ParalympicsGB since 2022 and will be supporting them through to Paris 2024.