Gympie Gold fins make big splash at Qld Sprint championships
SWIMMING: Two Gympie swimmers have showed they have what it takes to match it with anyone as they qualified for the finals at the Queensland State Sprint Championships n Saturday in Brisbane.
Gympie Gold Fins Swimming Club had 14 in total qualify for the championships but it was 11-year-old Tom Cranston and 16-year-old James Hadley who took it to the next level.
Cranston swam in the boys 11-year-old butterfly final finishing eighth in 33.08s and Hadley swam in the boys 16-year-old breaststroke final finishing ninth in 34.01s.
“We were really proud of both of them. They did even better than they expected,” Gold Fins president Dee White said.
“They had some personal bests to qualify for the final and they pulled some more out to get where they got to.”
Despite a few members swimming in the final in past, White said it was not a usual occurrence.
“We have had one or two a few years ago. One actually won the 50m freestyle final and we had a girl in the backstroke final but it is a pretty rare it is not a common thing,” she said.
“It was super exciting because everyone watches the final and they stop what they are doing.”
This was not Cranston’s first event but this was the first time he had swam in the final.
“I had a lot of fun and I was pretty proud of myself,” he said.
“It was my first final and I also got a pb. It was my aim to get to the final but I wanted to get a pb.
“Butterfly is definitely my best stroke, I have always enjoyed it and I have always gotten good results in it.”
Despite the nerves at the event, Cranston has a decent pre-race system to cope with the butterflies.
“When I race I try and block out everybody else and focus on the race,” he said.
“When you stand on the block you can hear everyone calling people’s names out and you just have to block it out. Focus on you and the end of the pool.
“I do not listen to anyone else but myself. I have been swimming (competively) since I was eight and all the races I have done I just know what to do know.”
Cranston first started as a youngster at Deep Blue Aquatics, Gympie on Southside and was a natural.
“Mum took me to lessons and I just started jumping up the levels really fast,” he said.
“Mum said I was a bit of a natural. I just really enjoyed it.”
The young gun has set himself two years to achieve his dream of achieving a medal.
“By the time I turn 13 I want to at least medal at states and maybe even make nationals,” he said.
“I will be training very hard and put everything into it.”
Cranston travels to Eumundi to train three to four times a week but hopes to double that.
“I am going to up it to four to five and possibly even four to five times,” he said.
“I have a lap pool at home and mostly I do the morning training there because it is too early to wake up at 4.30am to travel to Eumundi.
“We train for about an hour and 45 minutes each session. She just gives us sets after sets, just different drills she goes through with us.”
For anyone interested in swimming contact president Dee White on 0411 093 389 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or message the club on Facebook Gympie Gold Fins Swimming Club Inc.