Daniel sprints to world titles
EMU Park Surf Life Saving Club's Dan Rye is racing towards a world title quest.
Rye, 21, will represent the club in open beach flags and the beach sprint at the International Life Saving World Championships in Lorne, Victoria, on February 24 and 25.
This is a long way from the sixyear-old pool swimmer who first joined the Emu Park club as a nipper.
"I grew sick of swimming laps in the pool and eventually forgot all the water stuff and started doing well on the beach.''
Now consistently finding success with the beach events, it will be Rye's first appearance at a world event.
"Technically you don't qualify, but you don't show up if you're not going to do well,'' Rye said.
"After the results from last year, that gave me confidence with training.''
Rye was ranked fourth in Australia in flags last year.
The task is not easy with about 100 starters expected for the flags and about 150 in the sprints.
There is no room for error in either event.
"In the flags it's head down, they blow the whistle and from start to finish it's over in about 20 seconds,'' Rye said. "It's crucial you get the start, turn and first two to three steps right.''
Training involves about six afternoon sessions and three morning sessions each week.
Rye is on the track, wearing his spikes, about three days a week and spends three days a week sprinting on the beach practising his starts and turns.
He also throws in some cross training for good measure.
While Rye is looking forward to the challenge, he is battling an ongoing groin injury, and taking a cautious approach in training during the build-up to his world debut.