Get your news fix on happenings outside the pool with the latest ‘Beyond the Lane Lines.’ With each edition, we collect personal stories, little known facts, and general items of interest from around the world. Read on and learn something new this week.
#1 Herzog & Roche Visit Bushfire-Affected Communities
Australian representative swimmers Kurt Herzog and Ryan Roche recently visited Corryong, Adelong Tumbarumba, Batlow and Tumut, some of the communities affected the worst from the bush fires. The fires, which are mostly now under control, began in June of 2019 and resulted in the description of 3500 homes and over 46 million acres of land. The fires resulted in at least 34 fatalities.
Herzog and Roche gave a series of free swim clinics to the South Coast and Southern Inland communities helping lift spirits among some of the hardest-hit areas of New South Wales and Victoria.
“Ryan and I obviously saw what everyone else was seeing in the media in regards to the bush fires down south and thought what could we do, where we could help. And, we just thought that other than financially we could just go down there and give our time to run some clinics for some clubs down there who had been affected by the fires,” said Herzog.
“That’s what swimming’s about at the end of the day. It’s about coming together for the greater good. It’s important to give back,” added Ryan.
“Knowing the impact that we had, without a doubt, we’ll be back. We don’t know when, but 100 percent we’ll back whenever we can.”
75-year-old Ray Gordon was honored by Swim England with the Harold Fern Award for his volunteer work with the organization. Gordon served as President of the Amateur Swimming Association in 2012 and has worked at a number of high-profile national and international events, including the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games.
Gordon acknowledged his wife of 50 years in his thank-you address, saying, “This is recognition for Linda as well. If you ask people, they will probably say ‘that Ray can be a right pain’. But my wife is very mellow and we work well together as a team.
“I feel very proud that I have been associated with driving the sport forward and it’s nice to be recognized by your peers for the work you have done.”
#3 Hangzhou 2022 Venues to be Linked Underground
The last edition of Beyond the Lane Lines brought a new Asian Games TV station to your attention, and this week we have another update regarding plans the host city of the 2022 Asian Games, Hangzhou, China has in store.
Organizers announced that the main venues and halls within the Hangzhou Olympic and International Expo Centre will be connected via a series of underground tunnels, making it the biggest facility of its kind in the city.
“The project covers 986,000 square meters, taking up an area as large as 138 standard football pitches. The entire complex will open to the public before the 2022 Asian Games,” says the report.
Swimming, diving, and artistic swimming at the new aquatics center in Olympic Park, with basketball in the gymnasium attached to the aquatics complex.
The 19th Asian Games will take place from September 10-25, 2022.
#4 Coparropa Kicks Off Panama’s Olympic Day Online 2020
The Panama Olympic Committee is kicking off its ‘Olympic Day Online 2020’ virtual celebration with a presentation by Eileen Coparropa.
39-year-old Coparropa, nicknamed ‘La Sirena de Ora’ or the golden mermaid, represented the nation of Panama at 3 Olympic Games spanning Atlanta in 1996, Sydney in 200 and Athens in 2004. She was Panama’s flag bearer at each edition as well.
Coparropa earned Pan American Games silver in the 50m freestyle in 1999 and earned bronze in the same event at the same elite international event 4 years later.
Panama’s Olympic Day 2020 runs from June 15th to June 23rd and offers family-friendly activities to spread news and history of the Olympic movement and the values it purports.
Coparropa is expected to speak about her career and personal story during the event slated for June 11th.
#5 Swim Neptune Teens Splash for a Cause
Keaton Jones (15), Devin Esser (17), and Tal Spector (16) are all teammates on Swim Neptune, a USA Swimming club based in the Phoenix, Arizona area, but they recently joined forces for a unique cause.
The trio completed a 25-mile swim at Moon Valley Country Club, with the feat aimed at raising money to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontline workers in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
The ‘Going the Extra Mile’ swim fundraiser spanned 24 hours, kicking off at 10 am on Saturday, June 6th and finishing at 10 am on Sunday, June 7th. Swimmers broke the distance down into 1-mile efforts starting every hour on the hour, save for a 2-mile swim during the final hour.
AZ Family reports that the swimmers completed the fundraising swim-a-thon without sleep, resting only about 30 minutes in between rotations.
The team reported raising $33,000 to buy PPE and support drowning prevention efforts through the Neptune Swim Foundation.