Viera High runner receives invitation to compete in Australia


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Viera High junior Lance Reynolds is heading to Australia in July to take part in the Down Under International Games. Reynolds will run the 400 meters in the track and field competition. Photo by Carl Kotala

Lance Reynolds is making a run at a trip of a lifetime.

The Viera High junior will be heading to Australia’s Gold Coast to take part in the Down Under Sports Track & Field Meet this summer, where he will get to compete against an international field.

“The way I look at it is sort of a mini-Olympic trial,” Reynolds said. “This could be a step forward to see if I want to go to that next level of competition.

“I’m trying to work hard to get a scholarship for college, so I feel like this could help boost that opportunity and give me a feel of everything I need to do to get to that level.”

Reynolds was contacted by Down Under Sports after placing 10th in the 400 at Florida’s Class 3A regional finals with a personal best time of 51.58 seconds last year.

“I talked it over with my family, and after much debate, we decided that as long as I worked hard enough to raise the money, I could go,” he said.

Reynolds is trying to raise $4,500 by June 1 to make the trip. In early January, he had raised $2,130.

Now that football season is over, Reynolds is giving fundraising — and the upcoming track season — his full attention.

As part of his fundraising effort, he has been contacting local businesses to see if he can hold fundraising events at their establishments.

“I’ve done a lot of sponsorships for the football team, so I’m trying to take what I know from there and put it all into what I’m doing,” he said.

The trip will take place July 4 to 12.

Established in 1989, Down Under Sports offers competition in track, cross country, basketball, football, golf, volleyball and wrestling. Past participants include former Denver Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer.

Reynolds will be the first from Viera and the fifth from Brevard County to take part in the games.

Donations in Reynolds’ name can be made at DownUnderSports.com/payment?160153, or by calling 435-753-4732.