After concluding a historic Short Course World Championships for his nation of Ireland, 24-year-old Shane Ryan will be making a big training home move. The 50m backstroke bronze medalist in Hangzhou has announced he will be leaving his present base at Pinnacle Racing under Coach Sergio Lopez, stationed at Virginia Tech,and instead move to Ireland.
Under Lopez, Ryan was alongside other foreign athletes such as Wu Chun Feng of Chinese Taipei, Isabella Paez of Venezuela and breaststroke bronze medalist in Hangzhou, Felipe Lima of Brazil. Egyptian National Record holder Farida Osman also joined the training group just last month.
“After doing a lot of hard thinking. I have decided to move back to Ireland in January,” the former Penn State University athlete stated via social media today.
Thank you so much to @sergiolopezmiro for being the best coach and friend for the past year and thank you to everyone who has been part of the journey with me.”
Not only did Ryan take home Ireland’s first-ever senior World Championships medal with his 50m back bronze, but the sprinting ace was also a semi-finalist in the men’s 100m free, where he became the first Irishman ever to dip under 47 seconds in 46.97. Ryan was also a critical component of his nation’s record-setting 4x100m and 4x50m medley relays.
As Ryan was training in the United States, his name was left off of the 2018/19 Swim Ireland National Squad roster announced this past October.
Updated: Swim Ireland confirmed to SwimSwam that Ryan will join relaymates Conor Ferguson, Darragh Greene and Brendan Hyland at the National Centre Dublin under Coach Ben Higson and will be added to the National Squad official roster.
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After doing a lot of hard thinking. I have decided to move back to Ireland in January. I believe with the coaching staff and with the support of @sportireland and @swimireland I could come home with a Olympic medal in 2020. Thank you so much to @sergiolopezmiro for being the best coach and friend for the past year and thank you to everyone who has been part of the journey with me.