READY FOR THE WORLD: Winner of the South Burnett junior sports award Matthew Rankin with nominees, Cr Roz Frohloff and Cr Danita Potter at the South Burnett Australia Day awards 2019.
READY FOR THE WORLD: Winner of the South Burnett junior sports award Matthew Rankin with nominees, Cr Roz Frohloff and Cr Danita Potter at the South Burnett Australia Day awards 2019. Claudia Williams

Burnett athlete racing for his place on the world stage

MATTHEW Rankin has the world at his feet and the 2018 schoolboys Australian cross country champion is taking it in his stride.

Tomorrow he lines up in Canberra in the under-20 world cross country trials for his chance to race in Denmark.

"It is a small field but it is really hard competition and I am really looking forward to it,” he said.

Matthew successfully applied to race at the trials which accepts the top 10 per cent of competitors.

The 17-year-old was training solo when he became national champion but his drivers licence now gives him the chance to train with squads in Brisbane.

The Nanango State High School graduate will have a gap year in 2019 while working toward his dream to represent Australia at the Olympic Games.

"A college in America is talking to me and seeing if they can recruit me for next year,” he said.

"If I can get my times down, which are reasonable, I should be able to get a full scholarship.”

For his dedication and results Matthew was named South Burnett Junior Sportsperson of the Year on Friday night.

"I was sportsperson of the year at Nanango State High School and it feels really good to get it for South Burnett as well and because I have put so much work into it,” Matthew said.

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