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Jazz ready to take European plunge

by ZwemZa on August 8th, 2018

JAZZ Carlin says she is “starting to feel back to her best again” ahead of her tilt at European Championships glory (Swindon Advertiser)

Tomorrow morning’s 10km open water race represents a first major competition for Wiltshire’s Carlin since switching from the pool earlier this year.

The transition has not been an easy one, particularly with the 27-year-old from Swindon, who now lives in Bradford on Avon, having to recover from pneumonia that affected her quest to finish her pool career on the podium at the Commonwealth Games in April.

Carlin finished sixth in the 800m freestyle on the Gold Coast and also withdrew from both the 200m and 400m events, with it having since been revealed that those performances were hindered by illness.

Now back to fitness, two-time Olympic silver medallist Carlin bids for the best open water result of her short career in Glasgow on Thursday morning.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Carlin said: “It’s not been the best preparation for me. When I got back from Australia, I ended up in hospital.

“I found out I had pneumonia. I thought I had the flu but they sent me to A&E because my heart rate was 130bpm just sat down. I’m normally around 40bpm or just under.

“It was a bit of a shock having to be in hospital for a few days, sitting down with the doctor and them saying it could take three months to feel normal.

“When you’re an athlete, it’s a bit of a kick to the teeth. But I’ve got amazing staff around here and people doing everything they can to make sure I’m in the best shape.

“Since then I’ve had a couple of weeks’ recovery and I’ve gone from strength to strength. So I’m starting to feel back to my best again.

“I’m glad I’m here saying I’m going to the Europeans, I’m hoping to be competitive and I’m going to give it absolutely everything.”

Although her transition from pool to open water began last year, Carlin is still learning her trade in the discipline and concedes she faces a stiff test against a quality European field

“I did my first World Cup at the end of last year in China. I finished 12th and I was so disappointed. You want to be on the podium, you want to be competitive. I didn’t feel good enough,” said Carlin.

“But my open water coach said to me: “That’s your first World Cup and you’ve finished 12th. So you need to be grateful.” But in the back of my mind I always want the best of myself and perform at my best.

“It’s hard to take – being an amateur at the sport now. It’s like I’ve gone into a completely new sport where I don’t really know what I’m doing and I guess it does take time. It’s a lot more different than I thought it was but that does make it more exciting.

“Europe is a really strong field. You’ve got the Olympic champion Sharon van Rouwendaal, double world champion Aurélie Muller, all in this field. But it’s a challenge for me and I’m going to make sure I’m in the best shape and can be competitive.”

Harry Abbott | Swindon Advertiser

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