“I’ve been on an amazing journey through swimming, I’ve learnt so much about myself and how to deal with certain situations. I love swimming and I’m lucky to have been a part of the sport for so long,” says the 28-year-old who trained at National Centre Bath.
Carlin has racked up an impressive resume over the years,taking 13 international medals over a 6-year span, including earning individual gold medals across European Long Course Championships, European Short Course championships and Commonwealth Games. She holds Great Britain’s national record in the women’s 1500m freestyle.
At the 2016 Olympics, Carlin raced her way to silver in both the 400m and 800m freestyle events.
Since then, however, Carlin’s career never really got back on a consistent track. She withdrew from the 2017 World Championships, but then went on to win her first local open water race, the Serpentine Swim in London, just a few months later. She continued her open water transition by competing at 2 stops of the FINA World Cup 10k marathon circuit including Chun’An and Hong Kong, where the Bath-based athlete finished 11th and 22nd, respectively.
She competed at the 2018 European Championships also as an open water swimmer, placing 14th in the individual 10k and 4th as GBR’s 5k team.
Making her retirement announcement at the Welsh National Pool in Swansea, where her swimming career began, Carlin will take on the role as mentor to the current Welsh youth squad and will also lead the organisation’s Learn to Swim program.
Learn to Swim Wales is the national framework for learning to swim in Wales, aimed at supporting the national objective of making ‘every child a swimmer by the age of 11’ and enabling the population of Wales to be aquatically active.
Said Carlin, “It’s really hard for me to pick out one single highlight, obviously winning two silvers at the Olympics was an incredible experience but also winning gold for Wales at the Commonwealth Games in 2014 is also up there, so it’s really difficult to pick just one.”
Carlin’s longtime coach Dave McNulty, added, “Jazz moved to us at the British Swimming National Centre Bath in 2014, with a clear vision, mind-set and ambition to win Olympic medals at the Rio 2016 Games. Over the next two years, Jazz left no stone unturned in her dream of making it to the Olympic podium and made a huge ‘Olympic Shift’. This simply means, we did everything better, with more focus, and with an unrelenting drive for excellence in every area.
“When I walked Jazz down to the call room at the Rio Olympic Games for her first Olympic final, we honestly knew that all had been done that we possibly could do, and Jazz was absolutely ready; with two individual Olympic silver medals the rest is history.”
Commenting on Carlin’s decision to retire, British Swimming National Performance Director Chris Spice said, “Jazz has had an amazing career and was a valued leader in our squads. She moves on to the next chapter of her life as a double Olympic medallist, European and Commonwealth champion, which only a few British swimmers can claim.
“The most significant of all Jazz’s strengths was her ability to bounce back after the injury disappointments going in to London 2012, to turn that into two outstanding silver medals four years later in Rio.
“We will miss the determination that she brought to training every day and her infectious ‘never give up’ attitude. Jazz has already helped mentor our Performance Foundations squad with great success and we hope this will continue in future, as she has so much to offer aspiring young sports women and men. We wish her well in her future endeavours and we will continue to support her during this transition period.”
Carlin is among several notable British swimmers who have retired over the last year. In July of 2018, breaststroker Andrew Willis announced his retirement, with fellow Olympian Christopher Walker-Hebborn hanging up his goggles just two months later.