Jasmine Ferguson has taken the first steps towards fulfilling a dream after qualifying for the Australian schools cross country championships in Queensland.

The Sacred Heart Primary School student, who has cerebral palsy, earned her spot at nationals when she finished third in the under 12s multi class at the recent NSW championships.

Ferguson, who moved to Wagga from Newcastle at the start of the year, has found a mentor and inspiration in former Sacred Heart student and Southern Sports Academy Athlete, Carly Salmon.

The pair met early in the year when Salmon visited her old school to talk about life with cerebral palsy.

The Commonwealth Games runner, who returned to the school again after her fourth-placing in the 100m at the Gold Coast event, has regularly stayed in touch with Jasmine and her family, including helping her find a coach.

Jasmine says “winning” is what she enjoys most about cross country and is hoping to follow in the footsteps of Salmon and one day represent Australia at a Commonwealth Games.

Her stage three classmates at school shared the excitement of her podium finish at state and next week will hold a cake stall to help raise money for the trip to Queensland for nationals later this month.