YOUNG stars at RGC have begun pre-season training ahead of the upcoming campaign. The Gogs’ Academy squad are now two weeks into their intense training regime which covers a wide range of areas as they look to establish themselves further in some high-profile competitions throughout the season. Gareth Whittaker, lead strength and conditioning coach at RGC, said: “The first week is all about painting that picture and setting out the standards needed and expected. “We also manage the transition from training twice a week to the full-time programme. “Week two was an increase the training volume, plus introducing some nutritional and lifestyle aspects. For the boys to get the most out of the programme it is just as important to educate them on off field aspects. “We will then train for the next three weeks before the end of phase one and a week’s break. On return we start looking at the Regional Age Grade games, and playing the other regions.” Last season proved to be another highly successful one for the academy, with captain and Rydal Penrhos School pupil Dan Owen making a number of first team appearances and earned four caps as part of the Wales U18 set-up. Scrum half Henry Davies, who also attends the school as part of their partnership with the academy, narrowly missed out on the final national squad and will be hoping to go one better this time around.”