STROUD archer Riley Spencer–Nice is eyeing up global success with Great Britain after being selected for this month’s European Championships, writes Joe Leavey.

The 14–year–old has the top of the sport in his sights after continuing to impress at age–group level, with a busy 2019 only a good thing in his long–term ambitions.

Like most archers it’s a place at the Olympic Games that holds the attentions of the Deer Park clubman.

But Spencer-Nice doesn’t have to look too far for inspiration in a family that are far from strangers to the bow.

“My grandparents previously did the sport,” explained The King’s School Gloucester student. “When I was seven they took me along to the beginner’s course and it went from there, I’ve had a lot of practice in that time.

“My proudest moment was getting selected for the European Championships, which is coming up soon.

“It’s one of three this year, so I want to qualify for the team and then get through to the second round in the individual.

“Probably not this Olympics, but next Olympics is certainly a goal of mine, maybe even to medal there. Other than that, World Cups and World Cup medals are some of my main goals in the next few years.”

His cause is also being helped by SportsAid and the Backing The Best programme, which offers critical financial help to talented young athletes who would otherwise face difficulties progressing through their sport’s system.

Backed by £5.5 million of National Lottery funding, Backing The Best presents annual awards of £5,000 per athlete to help with essential costs such as travel, accommodation, kit, nutrition and medical bills.

Spencer-Nice was one of dozens of SportsAid athletes who attended workshops at The London Stadium, offering media training, nutrition advice, performance lifestyle guidance and support for parents.

The youngsters from all over the country were joined by sports stars Maggie Alphonsi, John McAvoy and Jake Wightman, with the latter offering his support for the SportsAid programme.

“When you’re young the funding opportunities are pretty slim, so to know that there are people out there that will help you fulfil the potential that you feel like you have when not a lot of others are doing that is pretty vital,” he said.

“I hope they’ve gained a lot from us athletes being here, because it wasn’t that long ago that we were in that position. Every single one of them has got a good platform to go for success.

“Being a part of something like this, they’re already a pretty good way along the path of being successful athletes. I hope they can come away believing that can happen thanks to Backing The Best.”

PLEASE LEAVE IN FINAL PAR – Backing The Best is helping talented young athletes facing the greatest financial pressure to pursue their sporting ambitions. The programme, managed by SportsAid for Sport England, is supported by National Lottery funding. Visit to find out more.