Jamieson targets Commonwealth Games gold

Michael Jamieson at the Mountbatten Centre. Picture: Paul Jacobs (141278-1)
Michael Jamieson at the Mountbatten Centre. Picture: Paul Jacobs (141278-1)
Havant & Waterlooville swimming club raised money with their channel challenge. Picture: Jonathan Stock

Havant & Waterlooville stars go to great lengths

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During his first visit to Portsmouth’s top swimming venue, London 2012 medallist Michael Jamieson outlined his mission to win Commonwealth gold this summer.

Having announced himself on the world stage with his sensational second place in the 200m breaststroke at the Olympics, the proud Scotsman will be one of the hottest home favourites in Glasgow 2014.

He’s also an ambassador for the upcoming Games, combining those duties with the training schedule he hopes will pay off with a gold medal.

But the Bath-based swimmer, from Glasgow, also managed to make time to drop into the Mountbatten Centre to start the countdown for SwimBritain 2014.

No doubt he would have been eyeing the chance to do a few quick lengths in the Olympic-size pool at the superb Stamshaw facility.

But he resisted temptation, instead focusing on promoting SwimBritain – a series of fun relays that will take place across Great Britain in September, part of the link up between British Gas and British Swimming.

Before that, Jamieson is clear – his mission is to top the podium at the Commonwealth Games.

He said: ‘This will be the biggest event of my life in the context of being at home.

‘Given the last few years – silver medals at the Commonwealths, World short course, European short course and Olympics, it’s time for me to move on from that, I think. That’s the target.

‘I have gone through that phase now where I have targeted podium finishes at the major meets.

‘Now I want to be challenging for titles.

‘We’ve got the Commonwealth Games this summer, World Championships next summer and then hopefully another Olympic Games.

‘I want to be challenging for titles at all of them.’

The Aquatics Centre in London certainly ranked right up there as one of the loudest and hottest venues of the Games.

It generated a tidal wave of support for the home swimmers.

This summer, Jamieson will again have the boost of a vociferous home crowd behind him.

He’ll be looking to maximise that backing as he goes for more glory.

‘London was the realisation of a career-long goal,’ he said.

‘It was a huge relief to get the result I was looking for.

‘I had the best two weeks of my life – being in the Olympic village, getting to be a part of the the team and then enjoying the rest of the Olympic experience as a spectator.

‘I absolutely loved it and all it did was make me hungrier for more medals – and not just silver anymore.

‘I’m trying to move things on and I have got a huge opportunity to do that this summer.

‘Knowing the difference the crowd can make, it is going to be an exciting lead up and I can’t wait for the event itself.’

It would be understandable if Jamieson was feeling the weight of expectation on his shoulders ahead of Glasgow 2014.

But he’s now relishing the chance to go for glory in a second major home championship in two years.

Jamieson added: ‘A home Olympic Games and a home Commonwealth Games – it doesn’t happen to anyone 

‘I don’t even know if there is anyone else, at the moment, who is from Glasgow who also competed in London.

‘So I am in a unique position and I’ve got a huge opportunity there.

‘I’m racing on day one as well which adds a bit more pressure to it.

‘But pressure is a result of support and it’s great to have that.

‘I’m taking things in my stride and the excitement is far outweighing the nerves.

‘I just need to keep that balance.’