Taree swimmer Bevan Smith in national time qualifying bid

This week's Times-Iguana Sportstar of the Week, Taree swimmer Bevan Smith.
This week's Times-Iguana Sportstar of the Week, Taree swimmer Bevan Smith.

Manning River Times Iguana Sportstar of the Week

Bevan Smith – swimming

QUALIFYING for the State and Australian swimming championships will be Bevan Smith’s goal in the next few weeks.

Bevan, a member of Taree Torpedoes Swimming Club, warmed up for the challenge at the recent Swimming NSW Achievers squad meet held at Sydney Aquatic Centre. Here he won two gold medals, a silver and a bronze swimming for North Coast in the 13 boys division.

Bevan is the Manning River Times Iguana Sportstar of the Week, so earning a $50 open order at Iguana.

He had wins in the 50 metre backstroke and freestyle with a second in the 50m fly and a third in the 50m breast-stroke and admits he surprised himself, especially in the freestyle.

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Bevan went into the meet with the ambition of defending the 50 metre backstroke he won last year. This he did in style, clearing away from the field to win by a body length. However, the 50 metre free was a closer affair.

“I won by about .7 of a second,’’ he said.

Bevan reasons his best chances of qualifying for State will be the 100 and 200 metres backstroke.

He’s made steady progress in both and has lowered his personal best in the 200 metres by an impressive nine seconds.

Bevan had a busy schedule of carnivals coming up in the next few weeks, starting with Crescent Head this weekend. Taree will host a carnival on November 18.

The State meet will be at the Sydney Aquatic Centre in December with the Australian championship early next year.

Swimming is Bevan’s obsession.

He began swimming competitively with the Taree club about four years ago.

“Mum said we should join to have a bit of fun and meet people,’’ he explained.

It was a good call from mum. Bevan is in the pool virtually 12 months a year.

"I have a couple of weeks off over Christmas, that’s about all,’’ he said.

It’s no longer a seasonal sport. When summer gives way to winter 

Bevan takes part in the busy short course program.

He takes part in Taree’s weekly sessions held at the Manning Aquatic Centre on Wednesday evenings during summer.

However, most of his training is done under the guidance of the experienced mentor Peter Sanders at Forster. He has three sessions a week with Sanders and is now looking forward to the carnival program that will keep him in the pool most weekends.

Bevan enjoys the camaraderie of the swimming club environment.

“I’ve made a lot of friends through swimming,’’ he explained.

Swimming at the Olympic Games would be the ultimate, he said.

He’ll put all his energies into competing at the 2024 Games to be held in Paris.