Craig Burke has spent half his life training with Special Olympics. Based in Glenfield, Auckland Craig trains and competes for Special Olympics North Harbour, and also competes in a mainstream tenpin bowling league.
Craig has been described as the Michael Jordan or Dan Carter of tenpin bowling for Special Olympics North Harbour.
His diary is based around his twice-weekly tenpin bowling training sessions and he also competes in regular bowling events for fitness.
Craig is a member of a Tuesday formal season league called Tender Foot League that has more than 15 members consisting of people from many walks of life as well as Special Olympics North Harbour compeitions on Saturday mornings at Wairau Park Bowling Centre.
“I really enjoy participating in Special Olympics, meeting new people, making new friends, and competing. I’m looking forward to competing in Los Angeles an enhancing my full potential with my skills and in sports,” he says.
Part of the attraction with tenpin bowling for Craig is the scoring. Craig is fascinated by statistics and keeps records of scores dating back several years—from his personal tenpin bowling games, and other sports codes. He is an avid rugby and rugby league fan and cites the Vodafone Warriors, Crusaders, and the All Blacks as his favourite teams. Suffice to say if their coaches are ever in need of historical data on match scores they should turn to Craig, he has them all written down.
Outside of sport, Craig holds down two jobs, one as a warehouse assistant at Abilities, and the other as “trolley boy” at Countdown. His duties encompass more than just gathering shopping carts, Craig is responsible for helping shoppers with the larger items, keeping the entrances clean of debris, cleaning up any spills that may occur throughout the store and generally helping out when asked or needed. Craig aims to learn more about different jobs at Countdown and to work as a filler and to be a supervisor if given a chance for promotion.