Cook eyeing up Olympic Games after National Cadet Championships success

Edinburgh fencer Jaimie Cook has the Olympic Games in his sights after impressing at the recent National Cadet Championships.
Edinburgh fencer Jaimie Cook has the Olympic Games in his sights after impressing at the recent National Cadet Championships.

By Jack Lacey-Hatton

Edinburgh fencer Jaimie Cook has the Olympic Games in his sights after impressing at the recent National Cadet Championships.

The Scottish foilist is going from strength-to-strength after becoming the country’s youngest ever competitor at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships, aged just 17.

He recently finished second at the British Junior Championships and is now targeting the international stage.

“At the start of the season it was tough coming back,” he said. “I didn’t really know what to expect.

“But the more I’ve fenced the more I’ve taken confidence, I went out to the cadet Euros and then the cadet Worlds, which was a great experience.

“To know I was one of the top four in the country to make it into the team was a big confidence boost.

“Now I don’t fear the senior stage as much, it’s all just about putting in the time to improve my craft.

“It’s a unique sport where you can progress quickly. I don’t look too far ahead but also in the back of my mind know that the Olympics in 2024 is a real target.

“That would be incredibly cool and I know I’ll give it everything to get there over the next two years.”

Cook’s development is supported by British Fencing, who recently launched their new ‘British Fencing commitment’ setting out the organisation’s cultures and values, both on and off the piste, going forward.

Dusty Miller, head of people and culture at the national governing body, said: “The culture at British Fencing is moving to a ‘fencer-centred’ approach.”

“What we are trying to do is put the development of the fencer at the very centre.

“To be fencer-centred is about putting the fencer’s performance, and the development of that individual, right at the heart of performance.

“The commitment is our binding contract with each other, between the community, parents and us as a national governing body to support the development and the growth of their children, hopefully into high performance adults.”

British Fencing supports fencing and para fencing across the UK, from grassroots initiatives and school-age experiences, through to clubs and competitions. The Athlete Development Programme supports fencers as they develop along the GBR pathway and has a three-point focus: Fencer-Centred, Development-Driven and Competition-Supported, placing the fencer at the heart of the competitive fencing map. Find out more at britishfencing.com