Ireland’s best hope in the pool this summer is Gráinne Murphy. She has been making her appearance known in the water since 2009, and already holds three individual national records: the 800m freestyle, 1500m and 200m Individual Medley.
At the 2010 European Aquatics Championship Murphy won a silver medal in the 1,500m freestyle and a year later she had her eyes on the London 2012 Olympics.
Murphy qualified for the Olympics on the 3rd December 2011 at the Dutch Open Championships, after a memorable performance in the 800m freestyle. She secured an impressive time of 8.31.14, which also won her a bronze medal at the event.
She had already raced with qualifying times in 2009 and 2010, and this was the next step in her career. Her coach, Ronald Claes said:
But like the other Olympic athletes we have featured, Murphy isn’t letting the pressure get to her. Instead, she’s using it as inspiration to make this a summer to remember:
‘I don’t feel under pressure from anyone. I’ve got my own goals and obviously if I achieve them I achieve them, but I’m going to the Olympics to do the best I can, to enjoy the experience and have as much fun as possible’
For Gráinne, London 2012 will be a vital step on her career path, but she already has ideas of where she wants to go when the Games come to an end.
This is an exciting time for Gráinne and we’re looking forward to seeing her do what she does best.