Repairs for leak won't hit pool stars
Members of the Australian women's Olympic relay squad at the AIS pool. Photo: Graham Tidy
Australian swimming's coach of the year John Fowlie is confident a leak in the Australian Institute of Sport's high-tech Aquatic Testing and Training Centre swimming pool won't affect his athlete's preparation for the 2013 World Championships.
The Australian Sports Commission have been tight lipped on details of the leaking pool, which was only built in 2006 and is used solely by elite swimmers, with split tiles believed to be the issue.
It has been estimated that the repair work will take four to six months with coaches consulted on when the repair work should take place in order to minimise disruption to the athletes.
''The damage does not impact on water quality and does not pose any risk to swimmers and staff safety, and the timing of the closure was implemented not to impact on the training for the FINA World Championships in Spain, which is in July and August for 2013,'' the commission said in a statement.
With reports that the repair work could cost about $2 million, the leak will be fixed in the next financial year, although the commission refused to comment on that figure with the job set to go to tender in February.
Fowlie, who trains Alicia Coutts and James Roberts, said the impact of the closure on his squad would be minor.
''We use two pools, the high-tech pool and the older pool … so what it really means is we'll have to come down to one pool for the period,'' Fowlie said.
''It does affect the AIS swim team, but it's not going to be catastrophic or anything.
''We'll train in the old pool … the new pool was built in 2006, so up until that point we only had the one facility, so we'll just all be together in that pool for a while.
''The AIS has had great results out of that pool, there's been a whole bunch of world records broken out of it, so it's an excellent facility.''
Fowlie said it would only affect the squad for a few weeks due to the timing of the repairs.
''We'll have one week left of training then, then we'll start our taper for the world championships, then the bulk of the team will be overseas,'' he said.
Taking the high-tech pool out of action in those weeks will cause some inconvenience, with no access to its integrated technology, but Fowlie was unconcerned.
''What we were doing before [the new pool], we did have the capabilities of doing a lot of that type of work; the analysis and the filming and the video feedback and the biomechanical analysis … it's just a longer set-up time,'' he said.