It’s not often country kids have an opportunity to learn from the best in the business.
But, that’s exactly what the members of the Cessnock Amateur Swimming Club (CASC) received this week when former world champion James Magnussen dived into town.
The three-time Olympic medallist delivered some valuable lessons, including pool safety tips, to the youngsters during a clinic at the Allandale Road aquatic centre.
The event included a “faster freestyle” session with the Port Macquarie product, who secured the 100m international crown in 2011 and 2013.
The 32-year-old won a total of 16 medals in major competition – eight gold, five silver and three bronze – spanning the Olympics, World Championships, Commonwealth Games and PanPacs.
He also holds the record for the fifth fastest swim in 100m freestyle history, with a time of 47.10.
And, for good measure, the man known as The Missile appeared on Dancing With The Stars and SAS Australia, too.
CASC president Ashlee Dodds said the organisation was thrilled to welcome Magnussen to Cessnock.
“To have him lead a swim clinic for some of the local community’s young and eager swimmers is terrific,” she stated.
“It’s very special to have world-class talent like James here with us at Cessnock Pool to teach… and inspiring for our club’s members.
“Having an exemplary Olympic-level role model like him actively engaging with youngsters in town and imparting advanced advice on swimming technique is really exciting.”
Cessnock City mayor Jay Suvaal added Magnussen’s visit to the local area came at a perfect time, with the hot weather the region was currently facing.
“Summer has well and truly arrived,” he said.
“And, naturally, with the warmer conditions comes more water activities around the community.
“At this time of year, it’s particularly important to remind everyone about water safety.
“Who better to spread the message in the community than swimming champion James Magnussen?”
The Cessnock Amateur Swimming Club meets each Monday evening at 6pm during the summer months at Cessnock Pool.
If you’re interested in joining, find more details on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/people/Cessnock-Amateur-Swimming-Club/100057208160025/
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