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Jasmine Barraclough

How long have you been an official?

I started helping out at the track while I was there training. I have been training and competing as a sprinter for Newport Harriers since I was about 13. When I was injured or not so involved, I was helping out with the basic jobs like raking the pits then I started officiating properly.

Where are you in your officiating journey? (Level/discipline) 

Last September I qualified as a level one field official after a season gaining experience. At level one I am still learning so not a huge amount of responsibility but it covers all the field disciplines.

What interested you about officiating?

I really appreciated all the time and effort the officials put in to make competition possible, so this is why I wanted to ‘give back’ and become an official.

I am currently at university in Bath studying sports science and I am taking a year away from competing, so I wanted to stay involved in athletics and dedicate all my time to becoming an official and as a coach.

Favourite moment as an official

I enjoyed the Welsh Athletics junior championships last summer – it was great to be at the first major event back after the pandemic stopped all competitions so there was a great buzz around it, and it was especially nice to see the young people enjoying getting back to sport again.

I have also just been awarded the Welsh Athletics Officials Newcomer of the Year which I am very proud of. It is very nice to be recognised.

What do you love most about officiating?

It is a great to give back to the athletics community along with learning lots of new skills and growing in a different part of athletics. Meeting all the other officials and becoming part of a different community has been lovely. They have been so welcoming and so helpful. They have been interested in my background as an athlete and my competition background which has been nice for me.

It is a great to be able to provide the competition environment for athletes that I treasured when I was younger and competing myself. There is a lot of learn and lots to love about being an official.

What are your ambitions in officiating?

I am quite young and am not sure what my career options are yet, but I would certainly like to carry on officiating as much as possible and progress all the way up to level four. As a sprinter I would like to get a track qualification as that is where I competed so it would be good to have that as well.

One day I’d love to officiate at a Commonwealth Games. Officiating for the best athletes in the world doesn’t sound so bad!  And I’d like to inspire, encourage and support more younger officials to have a go.

What would you tell others thinking about becoming an official?

Your club and the athletes need you. It is good to start out as a volunteer (as I did) to see how easy it is and how much fun it can be.

Athletes really appreciate officials and we definitely need more. It is very easy to qualify and you would be playing such a crucial part in enabling the competition to take place.

Using only three words describe what officiating means to you.

  • Rewarding
  • Enjoyable
  • Exciting

Young Official Jasmine Barraclough featured by UK Athletics as part of their 'Meet the Officials' series: Welsh Athletics Field Judge