Frederick Irwin student off to under-15 National Open Water Championships

Ben Roots will compete in the nationals in January.
Ben Roots will compete in the nationals in January.

FREDERICK Irwin Anglican School Year 9 student Ben Roots has qualified to compete in the under-15 National Open Water Championships (NOWC) in Adelaide in January.

Ben will be competing in the 5km and 7.5km distances.

He has been competing in pool events for the past five years and qualified for the finals at the State Open and Age Short Course Championships in September this year, in the 400m Freestyle, 200m Backstroke and 200m Freestyle events.

Ben also participated in the WA Open Water State Championships on November 20 at Champion Lakes and finished seventh in the 15-year-old age group.

Ben said his ambition is to qualify for the 2020 Olympic trials and swim with the best swimmers in Australia in the Open Water event.

From there he will see where he can go with his swimming.

“One of the goals I set back in April was to qualify for the NOWC this year, and all the training over the winter in the outside pool was aiming toward this goal,” he said.

“I am excited to have qualified and now I need to refocus and prepare the best I can for this event.”

Last season Ben had top three finishes for his age in all the local open water events he participated in, except two where he finished fourth.

Ben swam in seven rounds before breaking this thumb in January and was unable to swim for the rest of that summer season.

He trains eight times a week, with his coach tailoring his training toward the NOWC at the start of next year.

Ben also is a member of the Mandurah Swimming Club.

After the NOWC in January, Ben will be competing in pool events until the Open Water season begins again in October 2017.