Swim academy is an­other first for champ Chad

Sunday Tribune - - FRONT PAGE - NABEELAH SHAIKH

DUR­BAN-BORN Chad le Clos, the most dec­o­rated swim­mer at this year’s Com­mon­wealth Games in Aus­tralia, is re­turn­ing to South Africa to pur­sue a dream.

On Fri­day, he will launch the Chad Le Clos Academy (CLEC) at the Quad­rant Com­plex in Clare­mont, Cape Town.

With a to­tal of 17 ca­reer gold medals to his name, three of which have been bagged at this month’s Games in Gold Coast, Le Clos has his sights set on open­ing a “world-class” swim­ming academy.

It will fo­cus on train­ing young chil­dren to swim and, ul­ti­mately, pur­sue the path to Olympic great­ness.

Le Clos, who now lives in Cape Town, hopes to ex­pand the academy to other prov­inces through­out South Africa.

He started swim­ming com­pet­i­tively at the age of 10 and at 14 he made the se­nior Olympic squad.

At the age of 18 he held two se­nior South African records and Com­mon­wealth ju­nior and se­nior records.

His fa­ther, Bert le Clos, is as ex­cited as his son is about the prospects of the academy, es­pe­cially after Chad’s re­cent suc­cesses.

“He be­came the first to win the most medals in the his­tory of the Com­mon­wealth Games and also the first to win three con­sec­u­tive gold medals at the Games. He rewrote the his­tory book three times,” said a de­lighted Bert.

Kathryn Nurse of the CLEC Academy said: “We are very proud of our am­bas­sador and part­ner, Chad, for rep­re­sent­ing South Africa with such hon­our and hu­mil­ity.

“We are ex­cited to an­nounce devel­op­ments in the CLEC Academy. The big re­veal will take place when Chad is back.”

Le Clos will also have a birthday bash to look for­ward to on his re­turn. He turned 26 on Thurs­day.

He claimed his third gold medal of the Com­mon­wealth Games after win­ning the 100m but­ter­fly on Mon­day in a Games record time of 50.65 sec.

He had ear­lier won gold in the 50m and 200m but­ter­fly at this year’s event.

Chad le Clos cel­e­brates after win­ning the men’s 200m but­ter­fly fi­nal at the Com­mon­wealth Games. Photo:ap/rick Ry­croft

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