A HUNTINGDONSHIRE company has stepped forward and backed young sprinter Ryan Palmer to the tune of £1,250 as he aims to break into the upper echelons of British Athletics.

The Hunts Post featured the 18-year-old Huntingdonshire Athletics Club sprinter last month, and asked the question: Is there anyone out there who might be able to help Palmer fulfil his dreams.

Enter Borney Display Solutions, a Huntingdon flags, signs and banners printing and graphics company, who agreed to help finance Palmer’s training and travel costs for the forthcoming season.

Carli Beary, and her son Hayden, handed over the cheque at the St Ivo Outdoor Centre’s athletics track on Monday.

“Both myself and my husband Richard were athletes in our own sports when we were around Ryan’s age,” she said. “My husband was a runner and I did martial arts. We both competed at high levels.

“So when we saw Ryan’s ‘sponsor me’ piece in The Hunts Post, we thought it was something we could help him out with – and that he could help our company out as well.

“We see it as an excellent opportunity for both of us.”

Palmer is currently training for the short indoor season, which will begin in January, but his main focus is on next season’s outdoor racing, which will begin in May. His fastest time over 100 metres is 10.78 seconds and last season he was the 12th quickest under-20-year-old in the UK. His new sponsors don’t intend to be silent partners, either. “It’s exciting, we’re looking forward to watching him,” said Beary.

“We don’t want to be the kind of sponsors who just hand over the money and let them get on with it. When he does compete, both my husband and myself – and our four children – will be there to support him as well. We’ll be there cheering him on – that’s all part of it.”

Palmer said: “It’s excellent, I didn’t really know if there would be anyone out there who could help when I was in the paper.”