Rising wheelchair talent Finnley Kenny will be inspired by Paralympic gold medallist David Weir when he competes at the London Marathon this weekend.
The Denmead youngster will line up in the mini three-mile wheelchair race tomorrow.
Aged just 11, Kenny will be one of the youngest competitors in a field which will include 14-year-olds.
His dad, Tom, said the 2014 News Sports Awards runner-up cannot wait to take part in such an iconic race on the same course as his heroes.
He said: ‘Finnley is incredibly excited about it.
‘It’s a massive event and the opportunity for wheelchair racers to be part of it is fantastic.
‘David Weir is a real inspiration for him.
‘There’s the possibility that David might get his seventh wheelchair title on Sunday, and to be competing on the same day as him – that’s really inspiring for Finnley.
‘He’s been doing lots of training for it – both locally in and around Denmead – but also at Richmond Park and Kingston twice a week.
‘The crowd are always really supportive of the wheelchair athletes and it makes it a real pleasure for Finnley.’
Kenny, who has cerebral palsy, won the Great South Run’s junior wheelchair race last year, but will be doing double the distance in the capital.
‘Finnley would be delighted with 25 minutes and that would be a respectable time for someone of his age who has cerebral palsy,’ added dad Tom.
‘He’s really looking forward to seeing some of the other people he’s heard about who are racing on the day.
‘He will be pushing himself to his limit, I’m sure.’
The mini wheelchair race is the first event of a hectic schedule.
The Portchester Community College pupil begins his race at 8.40am.
It will take in the last three miles of the full marathon course.
Weir and Shelly Woods have both previously won the same event.