Lake lessons from medal-winning swimmer

Witney Gazette: Olympic swimmer Keri-Anne Payne at Blenheim Palace giving an open water masterclass Buy this photo Olympic swimmer Keri-Anne Payne at Blenheim Palace giving an open water masterclass

AN Olympic swimmer jumped into Blenheim Palace’s Grand Lake to pass on tips in the water.

Keri-Anne Payne, who won a silver medal at Beijing 2008 and finished fourth at London 2012, gave lessons to six swimmers.

She was there as part of the preparation for the British Gas SwimBritain race at the palace on Sunday, September 7.

Miss Payne said: “I wanted to get people working on their technique. I was showing them what I do and making them a lot better at swimming, so when they come back here for the race they can use their new techniques.

“You can make a big difference to some people by just moving their arms or making minor adjustments, so I love getting in to show them what they can do.”

SwimBritain includes a 1km race in which a team of four competitors swim four legs of 250m. There is also a 500m race following the same format with 125m legs for beginners.

Miss Payne, an ambassador for the event, also helped the swimmers use the SwimBritain training mobile phone app, which monitors progress and provides tips on training and nutrition.

She said the palace will provide a “beautiful backdrop” for the event, and added: “The Great Lake is amazing. It’s a nice clean lake to swim in, it’s quite shallow and gets really warm.

“SwimBritain is a really challenging event in open water but also realistic for ordinary people to take part in.”

Entry costs £40 per team. For more information visit swimbritain.co.uk

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