Did you know, Australia’s first post World War II Olympic gold medallist was trained by Forbes Carlile at Palm Beach Rock Pool? Today a group of 67 young Carlile Swimmers got a taste of how it all began.
It was back to the future. And what a surprise on day two of the holiday swimming camp put together by Olympic coach Chris Nesbit and his team. First up was a little history lesson, via Olympic champ Ian Thorpe (click on the window below).
The video showed how John Davies, trained at the rock pool where Forbes also invented the world’s first pace clock and would go on to a Gold Medal in 1952 in Helsinki. Then the swimmers had a peak back to how Ryde pool once looked and some of the champions it produced.
Today the young swimmers started their Palm Beach experience with a climb to the lighthouse. It would have been tough after dry land work yesterday followed by a tough kick set in the pool. After taking in the views it was time to go back to the pool at the southern end.
Who knows perhaps the ghost of Forbes put the sign in place. He once famously hypnotised a swimmer and told him a shark would be chasing him! There was no shortage of speed today that’s for sure. The young swimmers are part of the competitive pathway program and have been drawn from across Carlile’s nine teaching pools.
Coaches Danny Marshall, Jodi Armstrong, Gina Sacilotto, Paige Smyth and Sophie Taylor, wanted to take these youngsters out of their comfort zone and what a way to do it. The program is all part of Project 32, where Carlile intends to place athletes on the Australian team for a home Olympics.
If you want to find out more about the competitive pathway you can do that here.
It’s fair to say swimming in a rock pool when you have been accustomed to Olympic class facilities would be something of a shock. But champions and kids with a sense of fun, learn to take that in their stride. What a day. Forbes would be proud.