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SWIM STAR DAVIES SELECTED FOR BEIJING 2008 OLYMPIC GAMES

27 Feb 2008

David Davies

Olympic, World and Commonwealth medallist David Davies will continue his Olympic odyssey in Beijing this year as the British Olympic Association today officially announced his inclusion in Team GB.

On hearing of his selection, the 22-year-old Barry swimming star said:


"I am delighted to be going to my second Olympic Games. I am really looking forward to the coming months and my previous Games experience will help me to remain calm and focus on the job that needs to be done. To represent your country at an Olympic Games is the biggest accolade an athlete can have and I feel really honoured to be on the Great British team."

Davies was presented with the bronze medal for the 1500m Freestyle in his Olympic bow in Athens in 2004. He came third behind Australia’s Grant Hackett and America’s Larsen Jensen.

Hackett set the standards high, being just the 4th man ever to win the race twice at the Olympics in a time of 14.43.40mins. However, Davies had the race of his life setting a new European Record and personal best of 14.45.95mins, making him the second only British medal winner in the pool at the Games.

Success came again at the 2006 Commonwealth Games where the Welshman swept to gold in the 1500m freestyle and bronze in the 400m. He later swam to bronze at the World Championships in Melbourne in 2007, which tentatively secured his Olympic spot.

However, not content with domination of the indoor pool, Davies this year took a stroke towards joining pool rival Hackett for the inaugural 10km open water thrash in Beijing.

He put in a world-class, winning performance at the South African Open Water Championships in Cape Town in February to seal his place for the next stage of Olympic qualification in the 10km event.

In 1:53:58.00, Davies was a league apart from opponents, including the silver medalist, teammate Alan Bircher - an open-water specialist. The win qualified Davies for the 5th FINA World Open Water Championships in Seville on May 3. There, Hackett and Davies will meet for the first time should they both take their marathon plans to the next stage.

Davies – who is now based at Loughborough University and is coached by Kevin Renshaw - was today selected alongside Kirsty Balfour and Liam Tancock for the trip to Beijing.

Simon Clegg, Team GB 2008 Chef de Mission, said:

"I am pleased to welcome these swimmers into Team GB, particularly David who delighted us all in Athens by winning bronze in his first Olympic Games.

I am sure that he and the rest of the swimmers will be looking to build upon their recent successes and I wish them well in their final preparations for the Olympic Games."

For further information, please contact Becki Middleton in the BOA Communications Department on ext 225.

All interview requests for the athletes should go through Dave Richards, British Swimming Media Manager, T: 0/M: or Gemma Field, British Swimming Media Assistant, T: /M: .