Don looks forward to more memories

THE swimmers won’t be the only people clocking up the kilometres at the Victorian Country Championships at WAVES Wodonga later this month.

Technical official Don Alchin will be walking up and down the pool adjudicating on stroke correctness for up to five hours without a break.

“It keeps you busy,” he said yesterday.

“It’s important to have good shoes and plenty of sunscreen.

“It can be physically very demanding.”

Alchin will be among 60 officials running the championships from January 24 to 26.

About 750 competitors from the Border, East Gippsland, Echuca, Geelong, Gisborne, Hamilton, Lara, Maryborough, Moe, Morwell, Nyah Two Bays, Swan Hill, Sale, Shepparton, South Gippsland Bass, Sunraysia, Traralgon, Warragul and Warrnambool will hit the water over the three days.

Alchin started as a timekeeper when his children started to swim more than 30 years ago.

“I have made many friendships doing this week,” he said.

“The hardest part is telling a swimmer he has been disqualified.

“I have two wonderful memories of being an official.

“One is seeing our great swimmer Belinda Hocking trial for the Olympic Games and the other is Leisel Jones giving a state medal she had just won to a young admirer.”

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