Welsh Olympic athlete backs new competition to highlight the link between diet and sport

May 8 2012


Young people across Wales are being given the chance to win a prize that money cannot buy - the chance to cycle around a track with an Olympic and World Champion.

Geraint Thomas MBE, who will be competing in the Team Pursuit event at the Velodrome for Team GB, is encouraging young people to enter the Recipe for Success competition.

It asks children to think about the connection between food and sport, and how what they eat affects their health and their performance.

The winners of the competition and their school friends will receive vouchers worth 500 to buy sporting equipment for their school and also the chance to ride with Geraint at the Newport Velodrome in the autumn.

They will receive coaching on cycling and will also be able to ask Geraint questions about how he got started in cycling and what life as a professional athlete is like.

Two runner-up schools will each receive vouchers worth 250 to buy new sports equipment.

The competition, which has been launched by Welsh red meat promotion agency Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC), is open to all pupils in Wales aged between 11 and 16 and involves creating a recipe which has the right balance of nutrients to aid young people to be active.

Cardiff-born Geraint, who along with his team mates set a new world record at the World Track Cycling Championships in Melbourne last month, said: Fuelling yourself for whatever activity you're going to do is important. If you don't have enough energy your performance will suffer and your body will take longer to recover.

Whether you are a top athlete or just someone who is going out for a casual ride on your bike, it is important to eat a healthy balanced diet.

The competition is officially launched on May 4th and school pupils will be asked to create a recipe that can be part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle and will hopefully encourage and enable them to participate in sport.

It is open to all pupils between the ages of 11 and 16. The recipe must be a meal for four people costing no more than 10 and it must include either Welsh Lamb or Welsh Beef.

Elwen Roberts, HCC's Consumer Executive and author of the children's Cool 2 Cook books, will be one of the judges of the competition.

She said that making young people more aware of how their diet affects their health is essential. It is important that young people eat a healthy balanced diet. Lean red meat can play an important role in a balanced diet, providing essential nutrients such as iron, protein, zinc and vitamins B and D.

In addition young people need to eat a variety of foods from the other food groups in particular plenty of fruit and vegetables and carbohydrates so that they are getting the full range of nutrients needed to live healthy active lifestyles''.

More details about the competition can be found on the EatWelshLamb website:

As part of the competition, children are being encouraged to visit the Get Set website,, which teaches young people about the cultures of different nations that will be competing at the Olympic Games. They will be encouraged to use this information when they are thinking about the type of recipe they will design.

The winning school will be invited to bring up to 30 pupils to an exclusive track day at the Newport Velodrome where they will be given coaching on cycling techniques, get to ride with Geraint around the track and ask him about his life as a professional cyclist.

The deadline for entries is the 1st June 2012 and a grand final will be held in July where finalists from across Wales will be asked to cook up their recipe and give a presentation to a panel of judges.

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