Australia, in the midst of a review into London 2012, is getting on with the job of finding the next wave of talent to hone in the pool. The Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra will welcome 30 swimmers this Sunday at the outset of a six-day Talent Identification camp led by High Performance Youth Coach Vince Raleigh.
"The group of 14 boys and 16 girls will undertake education and testing sessions focussing on skill acquisition, physiology, biomechanics, nutrition and psychology, to ensure each swimmer is given ample opportunities for growth and success in their swimming career," says Swimming Australia.
Raleigh said: "We’ve invited a wide range of athletes to the camp, not just those who have performed at the age group level, but some older ones as well. We have access to some fantastic facilities, coaches, and sport scientists at the AIS, and for these swimmers and coaches to get the chance to train here for a week, and learn what’s required to make the next step, is invaluable at this stage of their swimming career."
The camp has an interesting twist to it: there is no age limit for swimmers selected for testing. Sprinter Holly Barratt is 24 and will be one of the older swimmers at the camp after good performances at the recent Australian Short-Course Championships this month.
That said, most swimmers heading for the camp are teenagers.