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Stirling swimmer set to qualify for World Championships

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Danielle Huskisson
Stirling swimmer Danielle Huskisson

Swimmer Danielle Huskisson looks set to be selected for the 2013 FINA World Championships in Barcelona after a brave display in her first ever 10k open water event.

Danielle, from South Shields, finished fastest British female and second female overall in  brutal conditions at the Portuguese 10km Open Water Championships.

That result looks likely to secure the University of Stirling student a place at the World Championships in Spain which start on 19 July. “It’s a great feeling to know I’ve done enough to qualify, though it probably won’t sink in until after I finish my exams” said the 20-year-old, one of 23 British swimmers currently receiving scholarship funding support from national student awards Winning Students.

“Halfway through the swim it got really tough – the water was very cold and there were really strong winds. I just kept going as I knew if I pulled out then I would never hear the end of it! I’ve only ever swum a 5k event before so to make the Worlds is great, especially as it’s the main meet of the year.”

Danielle clocks up around 7km at each of her 10 weekly swimming sessions to prepare for the demanding sport which has shot up in popularity since gaining Olympic status in 2008.

She was selected for the British team to race in Portugal following a strong showing in the 800m and 1500m Freestyle events at the inaugural British Gas International Swimming Meet in Leeds.

She added: “I want to do really well at the World Championships and then try to go to the European Championships next year, just keeping building up my experience. I do most of my training indoors and then aim to get into the water the day before an event just to acclimatise. The support from the University and from Winning Students has been great as it has funded me going to training camps to get me in the shape to qualify for major events.”

Her coach Ian Wright added: “Danielle’s performance in Portugal was excellent and just reward for the dedication and good form she has shown in training. She is well suited to open water swimming and the World Championships will give her the opportunity to compete against the best swimmers in the world.”

The other scholarship swimmers will have the chance to join Danielle in Barcelona at the British Gas Swimming Championships from 26 to 30 June, the event doubling up as the World Championship Trials.

Winning Students currently supports more than 150 talented athletes across 31 Scottish colleges and universities, providing funding support and academic flexibility. Find out more at: 

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