25-year-old Australian sprint star James Magnussen is back in the water, as ‘the missile’s’ agent confirmed to SwimSwam that the 2012 Olympic silver medalist has been back in full training with Mitch and Lach Falvey for approximately 3 weeks. Said to be ‘training very well’, Magnussen’s return to racing is tentatively set for the New South Wales State Championships, which is slated for early March.
Until then, Magnussen will continue training out of Ravenswood Swim Club, targeting qualification for the 2018 Commonwealth Games slated for Gold Coast, Australia. Last year, agent Mark Jones told SwimSwam exclusively that Magnussen was planning a full schedule of racing in 2017, which could potentially include appearances in both the USA and Europe around the Arena sponsored meets in the US, European events such as French Open, Mare Nostrum and Sette Colli as well as selected World Cup events.
As for where he’s at mentally entering 2017, the Rio Olympic recently told The Camden Courier that he’s getting over a rather difficult 2016 where he didn’t qualify for an individual Olympic event.
Reflecting, Magnussen said, “It was a frustrating year overall, but it was still good to get an Olympic medal at the end of it. That was just reward for the people that had helped me through that recovery process but it was a good year to put behind me so I can look forward now.”
But as far as where ‘Maggie’ is now, the former World Champion states, ”I wouldn’t still be training if I didn’t think I could get back to the top of the sport. Certainly no one within the sport has ever to my face doubted that I’m past it.
“I don’t even believe I’ve reached my best yet. I’m only 25 years old and if you look at guys like Michael Phelps and Anthony Ervin who are swimming into their mid-30s, Australia is really the only country in the world where people don’t have longevity in swimming because of the way the sport is structured here.”
Says Magnussen, “We’ve set all our goals based around the Commonwealth Games in April of 2018.”
If Magnussen doesn’t compete at the 2017 World Championships in Budapest, he may still be able to snag a spot on the Commonwealth Games roster via performances at the Australian National Swimming Championships set for April 9th-13th.