It has been 12 months of firsts for Paralympic champion Ollie Hynd, but the Kirkby swimmer is still determined to make another debut to remember this year.
The 18-year-old has gone from relative unknown to a household name since he claimed 200m medley gold, 400m freestyle silver and 100m backstroke bronze at the London 2012 Paralympics.
All came during Hynd’s first Games outing but the maiden appearances didn’t stop there as he made his first trip to Buckingham Palace to collect his MBE from Prince Charles.
But despite all of this Hynd has no intention of slowing down any time soon and has already booked himself three swims at the IPC World Championships in Canada in August.
They are in the same three events he won medals in at London 2012 following a fine British International Disability Championships at Sheffield’s Ponds Forge back in April.
The trip to Montreal will by Hynd’s first World Championship outing and the Mansfield swimmer is looking to celebrate the milestone in style, just like those that have gone before.
“Obviously 2012 was a big year for me and a very successful one but the start of this season hasn’t been bad either,” said Hynd.
“I am really pleased to have qualified for three swims at the worlds and then I went to the Palace and got my MBE from Prince Charles which was really good.
“Canada is the main meet of the year so that is what I will be concentrating on and, although I have already won medals at a Paralympics, I haven’t actually competed at a World Championships before so it will be my first.
“That is motivation in itself but I also want to keep going faster and keep moving forward towards the 2014 Commonwealth Games and ultimately the Rio Paralympics in 2016.
“I was lucky enough to be involved in my first Games at home and I want to make my first World Championships just as memorable.”
Before Hynd can entertain thoughts of a trip to Canada the teenager will return to Sheffield for the British Gas Championships at the end of the month.
And Hynd, who you can go along and watch at Ponds Forge with tickets being available from the British Swimming website, admits he will be looking to fine tune ahead of August’s global gathering.
“The British Championships for me will all be about working on a few things here and there to make sure I am ready for Canada,” added Hynd.
“I will probably do a few different events like the 100m freestyle to build on some speed work that I can take into the worlds.
“The British Championships are always a good event and while I am looking to try a few different things that doesn’t mean I won’t be looking to win too.”
This year British Gas is launching SwimBritain, a programme to create a healthier nation and get 500,000 people swimming more regularly by 2015. Visit www.swimbritain.co.uk/challenge.