Robert Novak Returns To ESWIM As Head Coach

Etobicoke Swim Club, commonly known as ESWIM, has announced that Robert Novak will be taking over as head coach, starting this August. He will replace Kevin Thorburn as head coach who died in April. Novak is no stranger to the club, however, having coached under Thorburn as the team’s head age group coach at ESWIM from 2008-2012.

  • Find ESWIM’s press release here.

Novak returns to ESWIM after serving as head coach of the Manta Swim Club in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Prior to that position, Novak was head coach of the Markham Aquatic Club (MAC) in Ontario from 2012-2018.

During his time at MAC, Novak was selected as a member of the coaching staff of the 2015 Junior Pan Pacific Swimming Championships team, of which three of his swimmers were members; Philip Kay, Ryan Telford, and Kayla Sanchez. Novak also coached Javier Acevedo to the 2016 Olympic Games and 2016 Short Course World Swimming Championships and Ruslan Gaziev to the 2018 Commonwealth Games and 2018 Pan Pacs. Additionally, he saw Alex Axon to the 2018 World Junior Open Water Championships, and Victoria Kwan to the 2017 World Junior Swimming Championships, and 2018 Junior Pan Pacs.

Throughout his career, Novak has received many distinctions such as being named several times to the Swimming Canada Selected Coaches Group, as well as the 2020 Canadian Coaches Association Mentorship Program.

Of his new position, Novak said;

“I feel truly privileged, honoured, and thrilled to be given this opportunity and I can’t wait to lead the team into the next chapter of what is a remarkable legacy in Canadian swimming. My family and I are extremely excited to move to rejoin the ESWIM family. I’m excited to meet our athletes and family members and get right to work”

The Etobicoke Swim Club is one of Canada’s most successful clubs. Under the tenure of Thorburn, 18 swimmers won Canadian National Titles, and at least 5 of the team’s swimmers qualified for the Canadian Olympic Team. That includes Brittany Maclean, who in 2016 won an Olympic bronze medal on the Canadian 800 free relay.

The team finished 8th in team scoring at last year’s Canadian National Championships

This announcement is the most recent in a growing list of coaching changes being seen across Canada including Sean Baker being named as new head coach of Novak’s old club, the Markham Aquatic Club, Darren Ward taking over as head coach of the Hamilton Aquatic Club, Dave Ling becoming head Coach of the Newmarket Stingrays, and Roman Ramirez taking over for Ling as head coach of the St. John’s Legends Swim Club. It is not yet clear who will take over as head coach of the Manta Swim club following Novak’s departure.

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2 years ago

Congrats, Rob!! Happy to have you back in T.O.

Let’s be fair
2 years ago

Robert Novak didn’t really coach the Ajax swimmers mentioned (Javier, Kayla, Ryan). Let’s be honest here, he had them for 3 months and just used their names to benefit his own well being.


Yes Let’s Be Fair
Reply to  Let’s be fair
2 years ago

Actually, he did. He also gave them a chance to still compete, after their old club folded. A pool and the ability to still remain active, so they could go to the Olympic Trials. And yes, it was actually more than 3 months that they were with MAC.

Got his number
Reply to  Let’s be fair
1 year ago

Same experience here: will do anything to promote himself without a care for the well-being of his athletes.

Derek McGregor
2 years ago

Congrats to Rob and the ESWIM family! Best of luck, well deserved