By Will Castle, Sportsbeat
Joshua Gammon has swimming in his blood and is hellbent on banishing his summer selection demons by making a splash at the Paris Olympic Games.
The Barnstaple star, 19, has been making waves in the pool ever since his first national competition three years ago, and was even in contention for the Team England squad for this summer’s Commonwealth Games.
Despite just missing out on selection for both Birmingham and the European Championships in Rome, Gammon insists that his frustration will only go on to motivate him to go that one step further, as he sets his sights on future events.
Gammon, whose parents were also talented swimmers and first sparked his interest in the sport, said: “I was a little bit gutted that I just missed out on both Commonwealth Games and European Championship selection.
🗣️ "This stadium and this crowd has been unbelievable. I don’t think it’s going to get much bigger than this. "
Huge congratulations to our very own @Joelclarkekhan for a memorable Commonwealth Games debut at @birminghamcg22 👇https://t.co/of78ou9P3t
— Pitching In (@PitchingIn_) August 4, 2022
“It’s a bit frustrating, but I’m nonetheless pleased with my times [from this season].
“Of course [it’ll give me motivation]. My first national competition was only three years ago, and I’m now in the age group with guys who have been doing it for 10-12 years.
“In that case, it’s almost expected. I’m not very experienced in the world of swimming yet, and luckily, I’ve got a bit of time on my hands.
“I’ve got plenty more experiences to come, so I’m not rushing it, and enjoying the process that comes.”
Gammon is also among a select group of Britain’s most promising young athletes to be sponsored by Entain – owner of Ladbrokes and Coral – and their flagship grassroots sports investment programme called Pitching In.
Gammon was keen to express how beneficial the funding has been to his development as an athlete, allowing him to grasp opportunities he otherwise wouldn’t have been able to take advantage of.
— Pitching In (@PitchingIn_) June 25, 2022
“It’s benefitted me massively,” he said.
“I’ve been able to get the top-level equipment, because as you probably know, us swimmers need a lot of equipment: hand paddles, fins, snorkels.
“I’ve been able to go to training knowing I’ve got the best equipment, and just completely focus on the important things like technique."
He continued: “The funding has also enabled me to move for more opportunities.
“For example, I’ve just come back from a week in Spain where I did the Spanish nationals, which was my main competition.
“Just being able to have the opportunity like that is incredible, and without the funding from Entain and SportAid, it just wouldn’t have been possible.”
Entain, owner of Ladbrokes and Coral, is proud to be championing the next generation of British sporting heroes by providing talented young athletes with financial support and personal development opportunities in partnership with SportsAid. Visit entaingroup.com to find out more