Splash for cash

GYMPIE'S most prestigious sprint swimming race, The Dash for Cash, will be the centrepiece of the Gympie Goldfins Gold Rush swimming carnival this weekend.

Fifteen-year-old Gympie swimmer Scott Gear is the favourite to take out the open male race and take home the $100 prize money. Gear said his recent times were nearly two seconds faster than any other competitor nominated for the 50m freestyle sprint.

That said, he will need to swim his best to make the final and then win the cash prize.

Goldfins Race and Carnival secretary, and Gear's mother Cherie Carlson, said the day was the biggest on the Gympie swimming calendar.

“We have 338 swimmers nominated from as far north as Rockhampton and south to Brisbane,” Carlson said.

“It is not as big as the 473 we had last year, but this is a more manageable number,” she said.

The Goldfins have this year, for the second time, hired semi- automatic timers for the event.

This means times swum will be eligible to be used as state and national level qualifying times.

Goldfins coach Libby Manthey said Gympie had plenty of talent to call on this year.

She said in the senior boys Scott Gear, Daniel Allen and David Lee will be medal chances and ex-Gympie swimmer Drew Timbs, who is now at boarding school, will also be hard to beat.

Manthey said eight year old Troy Carlson was looking like a star of the future.

“He has already broken one of Drew Timbs long-standing back stroke records,” Manthey said.

In the girls Jasmine Long and Olivia Carlson could also be in the medals.

Carlson said there would be four Dash for Cash races.

The open male and female with $100 first prize and junior boy and girl with $45 cash prize.

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