ROBIN Carpenter from North Yorkshire is living proof that sporting prowess can come at any age.
At a mere 89-years-young, the Helmsley octogenarian has just helped Helmsley Bowls Club lift silverware in Ryedale’s prestigious Waltham Cup.
And what makes his contribution so special is that Robin has lifted the trophy once before - in 1980, when he was a mere 47-years-old.
“It was perhaps a longer wait for a second than I expected,” says Robin, one of the 8-player team that triumphed over Thirsk in a tight final at Kirkbymoorside.
Robin’s win back in 1980 wasn’t his first taste of bowls glory either.
On the walls of Helmsley’s club pavilion, the previous winner board shows that eighteen years before that, in 1962, he was the town’s singles champion, exactly 60 years prior to this latest triumph.
“I started playing when I was 29,” adds Robin. “Man and boy. And I’m still learning.”
And Robin isn’t finished yet. Not by a long way.
"He’s playing better than ever," says club secretary Jan Laker. "I think the Commonwealth Games coverage showed people what a fascinating and genuinely exciting game this is whether you’re 18 or 80 and in his 90th year Robin still loves to watch and take on our youngest recruits, some of whom weren’t even alive when he started winning titles.”
This week he was back competing in the club’s pairs final alongside rising star Helen Danby.
“He’s such a clever, tactical player,” says Helen.
“And being younger than him doesn’t give you any advantage at all.”
Helmsley Bowling Club is set in beautiful surroundings on the edge of the North York Moors and they welcome new members of all abilities, from those who have played before to those who want to learn the game.
They advise that all you need is a pair of flat shoes and coaching will be provided and any other equipment you need can be borrowed at the club.
The club competes in three local leagues as well as holding internal club competitions and social bowling.
A club spokesman said: "Whether you are looking for a gentle sport to improve your health or to meet new friends, joining Helmsley Bowling Club may be just what you are looking for.
Our facilities are first class with a Clubhouse where delicious teas are served by the ladies for friendly matches with other Clubs and for other special events and our green is maintained to County standard.
For further information contact Jan Laker 01439 771037 or click here.