Swimming legend Dawn Fraser went through some wild weather landing in Sydney on Friday afternoon on her way to Cootamundra.
Dawn spent more than three hours on Saturday at Cootamundra’s indoor swimming pool passing on her knowledge and tips to local children and coaches.
Making the trip to Cootamundra specially from her home in Queensland, she said there was some “pretty wild flying” coming in to Sydney at the height of Friday’s storm, but “the captain knew what he was doing so it was fine”.
“I’m really pleased to be here and see the good facilities Cootamundra has now with the indoor pool, which means the kids can swim all year round,” said told the Herald.
She has been to Cootamundra before, with her first trip in 1974.
“On that trip I coached at Barellan, Cootamundra, Hay, Wagga Wagga - everywhere,” she said.
Dawn is in Cootamundra along with Kurt Herzog, an elite swimmer and member of the Australian swimming team currently rehabilitating from a series of injuries but hoping to get back into training for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
Tomorrow, Sunday, she will be guest of honour at the Cootamundra Swim Meet, at which there will be 195 swimmers competing from 14 clubs in the south west zone, 60 of the competitors being from Coota.
A Patron of Cootamundra Swimming Club, Gloria Schultz, has been a close friend of Dawn’s since Dawn came to coach kids at the Batman’s Pool in Melbourne in 1956, when she became a famous Olympian.
It was thanks to this connection that Cootamundra has been lucky enough to have such a well-known visitors - but Dawn goes to a number of other places all around Australia on a similar mission.
“I’ve not long got back from Western Australia where I was meeting and coaching Aboriginal kids in the Kimberley area and NSW teachers are going to get me to do some more work with Aboriginal kids.”
“I really love it because its helping the kids learn to swim and that’s what we’re all about.”