A TALENTED 13-year-old swimmer from Solihull School could be competing for Britain this summer after qualifying for the Olympic trials.
Abigail Humphreys achieved the British Championship qualifying time by 0.4 seconds in the 200m backstroke event at a regional open meet in Sheffield.
She will now go on to swim against the likes of European champion backstroker Elizabeth Simmonds on March 8 at the British Gas Swimming Championships in the Olympic pool at the Aquatic Centre, London where the British Olympic team will be selected.
A member of City of Coventry Swimming Club, Abby is now officially one of the top six swimmers in the country in her discipline and 13/14 age group.
She first swam competitively at the age of nine, moving to Coventry in January 2011 for more long-course experience after being ‘spotted’ by former Commonwealth 200m backstroke champion and Coventry Head Coach Adam Ruckwood.
Rapidly promoted from the Youth group, she began training full time in the Junior Elite Performance squad last April and went on to achieve the national qualifying time in the 200m backstroke at her first attempt. As a result, she was invited to become a member of the England Talent Development programme.
Abby won gold medals in the 200m backstroke and 400m individual medley, silver in the 400m freestyle and bronze in 200m individual medley at the Nuneaton Winter Open Meet.
Her coach John Adye said: “Abby has a got a great future as a swimmer. Although she is slightly built, she is technically superb, very disciplined and has lots of talent.”
Abby’s mother Janet Humphreys said: “We are thrilled with Abby’s success and very grateful to Solihull School for allowing her to swim instead of taking part in other games. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Abby at a time when she is still able to balance her swimming with her school work.”
Abby, who lives in Redditch, joined the independent co-educational school for pupils aged 7-18 years in its Junior School at the age of eight.