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FLINT tae kwon-do championJade Jones has been selected from the best of Britain’s brightest up-and-coming athletes as the first Jaguar Star of the Future, writes Alec Doyle.

After winning Great Britain’s first ever gold medal at the inaugural Youth Olympics in Singapore and placing herself at the head of the next generation of elite fighters in the Team GB programme in Manchester, the 17-year-old has been identified as the hottest prospect of all from a group spanning all major sports in the Jaguar Academy of Sport bursary scheme.

The Academy, backed by such luminaries as David Beckham, Dame Kelly Holmes, Jamie Baulch and Michael Vaughan, provides funding assistance for young athletes aspiring to either break into professional sport or win Olympic gold.

At the first annual awards of the Academy held at Lord’s, Jones was selected for a special recognition award before being presented with one of the biggest prizes of the night, the 2010 Star of the Future award.

What made it more special was that she was selected out of 35 young stars from across the sporting spectrum by a panel of some of Britain’s greatest ever sportsmen and women, including Colin Jackson, Sir Steve Redgrave, Steven Gerrard and Sir Chris Hoy.

“It was a great honour to receive this award especially as it is the first one,” she said.

“I just want to say a big thank you to the Jaguar team, especially their patrons and ambassadors because it is amazing what they are doing and I have really enjoyed it so thank you.”

Jones has also won the Flintshire Chronicle/Scottish Power Your Champions Sports Person of the Year award and tomorrow night will go head to head for the overall Sporting Champion award to cap a fantastic 2010 before travelling to Paris at the end of this month to tackle the French Open as she continues to build toward her dream of competing in her home Olympics in London.

http://www.flintshirechronicle.co.uk/flintshire-sport/other-sports/2010/11/11/martial-arts-flint-tae-kwon-do-ace-jade-jones-singled-out-as-a-star-of-the-future-by-jaguar-academy-51352-27635153/