Star sets sights on CQ title
IT'S THE first swim meet for 2012 and Karleigh Banks is ready to dive into the deep water and set the swimming standard.
The 14-year-old is determined to break through in this year's swimming events, with it all starting tomorrow at the Central Queensland Sprint Championships.
Hosted by the Yeppoon Aquatic Centre at Cooee Bay, the annual meet is the first competition for Banks, as well as many of the local swimmers, and will act as a strong platform to determine who will be the top swimmers for this season.
The competition is set to be fierce, with more than 185 competitors from around CQ making the trip hoping to qualify for the Queensland Sprint Championships being held in Brisbane next month.
But the local torpedo isn't too worried, with Banks hoping to not only qualify but swim a national record.
"I want to try to get the 50m freestyle national time, which means I will have to knock about 0.5 seconds off my time," Banks said.
Banks said her Rocky City Swim Club had been training hard leading up to this weekend's event.
"Training is really busy at the moment, it's pretty full on with around 10 training sessions per week," she said.
After returning home with a silver medal from the 2011 State Championships Banks is more than ready to dive back into this weekend's competition.
"I'm really looking forward to it, it's something different because I am not really a sprinter, so it will be fun to get out there and sprint," Banks said.
But the local swimmer is not the only one excited for this weekend's event.
CQ Swimming Association president Gary Knight said this weekend's event was going to see improvement in local talent.
"There seems to be more enthusiasm in the region this year so we have decided to combine the meet with a swim clinic which will be held by some of Queensland's top coaches on Sunday," Knight said.
"The clinic will include teaching general skills like turns, start and other swimming skills, as well as talking to the swimmers about their pathways and opportunities."
The CQ Sprint Championships begin tomorrow morning at the Yeppoon Aquatic Centre with events kicking off at 8.30am.