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Local swimmer making a splash in national rankings

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Emma Pritchard, Clarence Valley Independent

One of the Clarence Valley’s most prolific swimmers is already making waves in 2022.

Andrea Thomson
Clarence Valley swimmer Andrea ‘Torpedo’ Thomson, 13, recently achieved a top two ranking in Australia for her age group in the 5km open water swim. She is currently preparing to compete in Adelaide later this month. Photo: contributed

After claiming the Under 13s Girls Distance Champion at the North Coast Area Championships in Coffs Harbour late last year, Andrea ‘Torpedo’ Thomson travelled to Gunnedah where she competed in the 2022 NSW Country Regionals on January 8, winning gold in the 400m individual medley and 1500m freestyle, before journeying to Sydney to participate in the NSW Open Water Championships and competing in her first open water event, the NSW JX Exhibition 2500m swim where she placed 4th in her age group.

After achieving a national qualifying time and establishing a top two ranking in Australia for her age group in the 5000m open water swim, along with a silver medal, Andrea is currently training to compete in the Australian Open Water National Championship in Adelaide on January 30 and focused on adding further accolades to her impressive record.

“I love being in the water and I’ve been having a lot of fun swimming at different events this year,” she said happily.

“I’d never competed in open water competitions before.

“It’s quite different from swimming in a pool because there are no lines to follow, the water is not as clear, there are hot and cold patches and it’s more challenging, but I really love it.”

With her sight firmly set on one day representing Australia at the Olympics, Andrea is relishing every opportunity she gets to be in the pool.

On average, she completes seven two-hour training sessions each week in Maclean and Nana Glen with her coaches Sarah-Jane Weir and former Olympian Ruth Everuss.

“She’s very dedicated and always puts in 100 percent,” said her proud mum Kerry Bowers-Thomson.

“She’s been swimming since she was seven after she got in the pool to increase her fitness while she was a physical culture dancer, and her passion grew from there.”

After driving 1460km in two days earlier this year to enable Andrea to compete in competitions across the state, Ms Bowers-Thomson said the most rewarding part of the journey is seeing her daughter perform so well and have a lot of fun in the pool.

As she prepares for the upcoming competition in South Australia, Andrea is looking forward to competing in more open water events in 2022.

Clarence Valley Independent 19 January 2022

This article appeared in the Clarence Valley Independent, 19 January 2022.

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