Kieran Preston of Stonehaven has been selected to represent Team Scotland for the Youth Commonwealth Games in Samoa in September.
Kieran along with five other swimmers have been selected.
Kieran started his competitive swimming with Stonehaven Amateur Swimming Club a number of years ago where he was coached by Glenn Beck, Hamish Grant and Maarten Ligtendag, among others. The majority of his training is now with South Aberdeenshire Swimmings’ Top Squad based at Westhill with Coach Gary Paterson.
Kieran’s major focus for this year was qualifying for the Commonwealth Youth Games, and having achieved this first step into ‘Junior International waters’ Kieran hopes to continue this progression towards senior honours.
The Commonwealth Youth Games concept was developed by Scotland as a development opportunity to introduce athletes under the age of 18 to an international multi-sport Games. This experience helps to bridge the gap between young athletes competing in their own sport specific competitions and the testing experience of a first Commonwealth Games.
The fifth Commonwealth Youth Games will be held in Samoa, 5-11 September 2015 and there is already compelling evidence of the successful role the Youth Games play in an athlete’s development.
To date 66 Scottish athletes have progressed from the youth to the senior Commonwealth Games with 16 going on to win a total of 26 medals for Scotland.
Swimming has a particularly glowing past record with Glasgow 2014 medallists Hannah Miley and Robbie Renwick, along with Olympian Craig Benson, among Youth Games alumni.
Swimming events will take place at the Tuana’imato Sports Facility in Samoa’s capital Apia, purpose built for the 2007 Pacific Island Games and refurbished for the Youth Games.
Alan Lynn, National Coach for Scottish Swimming said: “Congratulations to the swimmers on their selection. As a first multi-sport Games experience, the Commonwealth Youth Games is a fantastic event to learn about the challenges of being part of something bigger than your sport.
“Several outstanding senior performers have used the Youth Games as a springboard to a successful career and I look forward to seeing this happen with this year’s group. Experiencing not only the competition, but the travel, the culture and the camaraderie of a Commonwealth event will serve them well and I wish them every success.”