RARING TO GO: Commonwealth Games volunteer   Ian Wenzel is excited at the prospect of seeing a sport he loves from a whole new perspective.
RARING TO GO: Commonwealth Games volunteer Ian Wenzel is excited at the prospect of seeing a sport he loves from a whole new perspective. Josh Preston

Ian's 'exciting' Gold Coast Games gig

FOR Gympie resident and long-time volunteer Ian Wenzel, a role at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games took some marital encouragement at first.

The 65-year-old former Gympie South State School Principal, who will work to gather post-match "flash quotes” from athletes competing at the Games' Hockey events in Logan, said his wife Lesley suggested he apply for a position when they opened last year.

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Mr Wenzel said he was "pretty happy” to make the cut.

"There were around 40,000 applicants, and I was one of 15,000 to be accepted, which is quite pleasing,” he said.

"I've been a volunteer and administrator, mostly in sport, for a large part of my life.

"I love my sport, so this will be a very exciting experience for me.

"I've been involved with the Gympie Hockey scene for a long time, my kids played here.

"I'll be seeing and watching the game in a new way, and interacting with the players on top of that, which is also interesting.”

HONOUR: Locals Leonie Hempsall (left) and Cindy Buchan are excited to be volunteering at the Gold Coast Games.
HONOUR: Locals Leonie Hempsall (left) and Cindy Buchan are excited to be volunteering at the Gold Coast Games. Contributed

Mr Wenzel said he felt "a little trepidation” about his specific role, but would embrace the unique opportunity to represent Gympie.

"In speaking with my fellow volunteers from this area, we all agree that having the chance to be a part of something as big as the Commonwealth Games is very special.”

Mr Wenzel will be joined at the Games by other volunteers from the Gympie region, including Bravo Disability Support workers Cindy Buchan and Leonie Hempsall.

Ms Buchan said the pair were "privileged” to be accepted for their respective roles as Sport Administration officers.

"We're very, very excited to be involved,” she said.

"It will be fantastic to see the paralympics, which has more events than they've ever had, and also equal male and female trophy halls.”

Gympie Times


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