Danish trip is start of Chris’ countdown to Glasgow 2014

Latest sports news from the Bury Free Press
Latest sports news from the Bury Free Press
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Chris Walker-Hebborn’s countdown to next year’s Commonwealth Games 
begins at the European Short Course Swimming Championships in Denmark today.

The 23-year-old, from Bury St Edmunds, competes in the 50m backstroke and the 100m backstroke over an intensive two-day programme in the city of Herning.

Walker-Hebborn — who holds the British short course record over 200m — has changed his specialist distance to 100m after a stunning display at last year’s British trials, so is preparing to enter new territory.

“Medals are within reach, but I will just have to see how it goes,” he said. “We are taking it seriously and it’s going to be a very quick meet.

“We’ve had a good rest for it and I’m hoping to swim pretty quickly.”

Walker-Hebborn had specialised over 200m until stunning everyone — including himself — with a time of 53.3 seconds over 100m at last year’s British trials.

That was within a tenth of a second of the bronze medal-winning time at the World Championships, but he could not reproduce that on the biggest stage.

However, after months of training specifically for the distance — putting on 6kg of weight in the process — Walker-Hebborn hopes to be better prepared for the sprint distances.

“I’m trying to put on a lot more weight to compete with these sprint guys,” he said. “I’ve put on around six kilos for a lot more muscle and a lot more power.”

Walker-Hebborncompetes in the 50m backstroke today and the 100m backstroke tomorrow before turning his attention to the Commonwealth trials in April.