03 Mar INTO THE BLUE: FRAN’S AQUATHLON ADVENTURE
Local master’s athlete, Fran Moroney, has always loved swimming! After swimming competitively as a child, Fran hung up her goggles for almost 30 years before diving back into the pool when she moved to Gladstone just over six years ago. “I knew there was a masters club here,” Fran said, “so I joined them and started to swim with them.” It wasn’t long before Fran was hooked again!
A member of the Gladstone Gropers Master’s swim squad Fran has recently been awarded a Queensland long distance meet record which she achieved at the Pan Pacific Masters Games in November last year. Fran’s time to beat in the 55-59yrs 400m butterfly event is 7:32.36.
Fran, who is also a member of the Western Suburbs Waves Swimming and Triathlon Club and 3D Coaching trains several nights a week both in the pool and on land. Her dedication and commitment to training has seen Fran competing in triathlons, aquathlons, duathlons, swimming and running events across Australia and as of last year around the world. In 2018 Fran qualified to represent Australia and compete at the World Multi-Sport Championships in Middelfart, Denmark in the Aquathlon, a 1km swim and 5km running event. In the icy waters the Middelfart Harbour Fran performed well and it was from this moment she set a goal to return to the event and improve her results. “I was hooked and wanted to go again. I wanted to improve, so I have been training a lot more,” Fran said. All the training has paid off as in May, Fran will travel to Ponteverda, Spain to again compete in the Aquathlon world championships. Also competing at the international event are Gladstone locals Alison and Paul Green.
Fran has a message for anyone thinking about starting a new sport or getting back into a sport they love. “Just give it a go, when I came back to swimming, I could swim 25m and then I would have to stop and cough Because I was just so out of breath, I have built up gradually. Even with the running, which I have never been very good at, now I quite enjoy going out for a run! I never thought that would happen,” she added.