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Graeme Laing, one of New Zealand’s top swimming coaches was hosted by Fiordland Amateur Swimming Club for a weekend of training sessions of 72 junior swimmers, aged from 6 to 14.
Large numbers of junior swimmers have benefitted from his training sessions in Fiordland since 2010. The Fiordland club currently has 96 members.
Laing had originally been going to Blackmount Pool near Tuatapere each summer for a week for years and some of the Fiordland swimmers would go down for that, and one time somebody asked him to come to Fiordland and coach at the pool.
“Laing was based in Dunedin when he first came south, but now lives in Matamata, which is a lot further to come”, said Fiordland Amateur Swimming Club President Debbie Taylor.
“We are the only club in the south that he does training sessions for now, so we are very privileged to have a coach of his calibre training our club members”.
“Interest is very high amongst the club swimmers and the kids really respond to him. The kids have four lessons over the course of a weekend, having that group together will improve their ability," Taylor said.
Laing's late father Duncan coached Olympian Danyon Loader, winner of two gold medals at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and a silver medal at Barcelona in 1992, and Philip Rush, current world record holder for the fastest two- and three-way swim of the English Channel.
- Julie Walls