Pierre De Coubertin Awards-Cathy Runting

The 2015 Pierre De Coubertin Awards

The Pierre de Coubertin Awards, an initiative of the Victorian Olympic Council and the Department of Education and Training, turned 18 this year and WPSC was one of the 15 schools who have participated each year since its inception in 1997.

There are now over 200 school representatives receiving this award-an indication of the significance and esteem in which this award is held.

 Named after the founder of the Modern Olympic Games, Baron Pierre de Coubertin, the awards aim to recognise students who demonstrate attributes consistent with the fundamental aims of the Olympic movement. These attributes include participation in sporting endeavours with a particular emphasis on competing and commendable sporting behaviour.

 This year the award was presented to Cathy Runting of Year 12 student. The award ceremony was held on Sunday June 21st at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC) and provided the opportunity to connect one on one with Olympians, such as Belinda Hocking and Matson Lawson. The day also included a tour of the Victorian Institute of Sport (VIS). Western Port also received a certificate recognising our support.

 Pierre’s inspiring message reminds us that: “The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part. Just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle.”

 Cathy’s nomination citation:

Throughout her secondary school years, Cathy has always been a keen and motivated student, representing her school with pride and commitment. Cathy is an exemplary student both academically and in her sporting endeavours. She is a quiet achiever. Cathy has consistently participated in cross country both at the division and Southern Metropolitan competitions. She has won the admiration of her peers with her continued successes at Athletics carnivals. Cathy won gold at the division championships in 100m, 200m, 400m and relay.

 Cathy literacy article is presented below:

My Olympic moment that epitomizes participation in sport is Edwin Flacks involvement with the first modern Olympic Games in Athens 1896.

Edwin Flack the pioneer; trailblazer – the man who began the appreciation of the Olympic Games in Australia. His dedication to participate in and his journey to Athens in 1896 is one to be marveled. Flack thoroughly enjoyed running and it was this passion that drove him to partake in the first, largely unknown, Olympic Games. He took leave form his job, and ventured across Europe by boat and train, suffering severe sea sickness, to become the only Australian participant in Athens. However, the circumstances didn’t daunt Flack, as he was victorious in the 800 and 1500 metres, breaking the long lasting domination of American athletes in track and field.

He demonstrated the Olympic value of Excellence, in which he gave his best in all that he participated in, including in his 1500 metres race were he blazed away from the American favorite in the final straight to win by more than 5 metres. Not only did he participate in track and field, but the marathon and the men’s tennis singles and doubles – he took every opportunity to ‘have a go’. Flack achieved enduring admiration from his success on the track; albeit initiated from his drive to participate in the Games. He epitomizes what it is to be Australian; hard-working, good willed and he valued fair play. Flack was Australia’s Olympic champion; the first to compete; the first to triumph, and it is his determination and effort to embark on his Olympic journey that created the pride and enjoyment that is now associated with participating for Australia in the Olympics.