Ambitious Jermy leaving rivals in his wake

Oliver Jeremy has plenty of motivation as he attempts to realise his swimming ambitions
Oliver Jeremy has plenty of motivation as he attempts to realise his swimming ambitions
Kate Steels-Fryatt in action  Picture: Terry Scott

What it’s like to be an ice water swimmer

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Swimming sensation Oliver Jermy is not short of motivation when the alarm goes off at 5.10am most mornings.

It may take a bit of encouragement from his dad Paul to ensure he gets to the pool in time for his 5.45am starts.

But with the 15-year-old Havant & Waterlooville Swim Club member confident of what he wants to achieve in the sport, the task is made that bit easier.

The fact the schoolboy is well on course to achieve his dream of international honours, appearances at major finals, top-quality times and a successful career in the water, also helps.

Jermy is currently ranked in the top five for his age group in Great Britain.

And with a breathtaking 2012 to build on – when he made light of club records, claimed a host of Hampshire titles, earned qualifying times for nationals and claimed county and England recognition – the path is clear for him to make his dreams a reality.

‘The main aim at the moment is to get noticed and get a scholarship for a university in California or somewhere else in America and build from that,’ said the Lovedean ace.

‘If I win at nationals or get high up the rankings, then hopefully I’ll get spotted.

‘It’s quite common for swimmers to try to get a scholarship at a top American university.

‘I just have to make sure I’m in the top five per cent in the UK by the time I’m 18.

‘The next big aim, though, is getting back to the nationals and improving my times.

‘Hopefully, next year I’ll compete at the British Championships, too.

‘I’ve already qualified for them for this year – but I will leave it until 2014 to compete there because of my age.

‘If I do well there, then hopefully I’ll get picked for the European Juniors, too.

‘To achieve this, I’m in the pool three mornings a week at 5.45am and then back again in the evening four times a week.

‘The mornings are tough and it normally takes my dad to throw something at me to get me up.

‘I’ve been doing them for two to three years now and he’s been a big help.

‘But I do have a lot of get up and go – and as soon as I’m in the pool I’m raring to go.’

Jermy is currently concentrating on this month’s Hampshire Championships and the schools’ trials for the south east’s regional team.

They are sure to provide more glory days but it will take a lot to beat last year’s experiences.

‘2012 was a good year for swimming,’ added Jermy.

‘I also went to the Olympic pool and swam in the Sainsbury’s Schools, which was a great experience.

‘I wasn’t expecting to go there with the south east team and certainly wasn’t expecting to do as well as I did.

‘I was the youngest in my age group and got a third in the 15-16 age group 400m individual medley.

‘It was great to swim there before any of the Olympics took place.

‘I was pretty nervous but just about controlled it.

‘My favourite moment, though, had to be swimming at national finals when they do the big call for the final.

‘I was up in the 400m individual medley and there were a few hundred people there.

‘All the information was up on the big screens. The set-up was really good.

‘I didn’t medal but wasn’t really expecting to as I was the year below.

‘But it was a good experience and it was good to sample it all.’