Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Centenarian swimmer scores 100 per cent in pool

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THREE world records in the books -- well, not yet, but pending -- and one more likely to come next month.For 100-year-old super-senior swimmer Jaring Timmerman, it's all in a day's work at the pool.

"Oddly enough, they're world records," Timmerman chuckled Monday of his weekend of wonder. "So that's something, isn't it? I don't know whether I was spry or not -- I was nervous as a kitten. But I'm glad that I accomplished something. It was good."

Timmerman, competing in the 100-104 age group for the first time since his 100th birthday Feb. 11, shattered world records in the 50-metre and 100-metre freestyle events on Saturday at Pan Am Pool at the 2009 Manitoba Masters Swimming Championship, as well as in the 50-metre back-stroke.

A world mark in the 100 back would almost certainly have been his Sunday, but he didn't enter that event because he was at a big do in his honour at Booth College attended by close to 200 people.

You know something?," he posed to an interviewer. "And this is hard to believe -- but I broke the 100-metre freestyle world record by one minute, 30 seconds. Can you picture that? That is more than I ever anticipated.

"I think it's the adrenaline that starts to flow, you know? It seemed to work."

Timmerman has more adrenaline and get-up-and-go in him than some people half his age. But now it's on to the Canadian Masters in Toronto next month, where he's hoping to break the world record in the 100 back-stroke that he missed out on Sunday.

"I'm going to Toronto on May 14," said Timmerman, who was being followed by TV cameras on the pool deck and under water on Saturday for a documentary that's supposed to be aired sometime this summer.

"I haven't got too much hope of beating what I've already established because I'll be entering four events there (including the 100 back-stroke). The 50's a cinch, I can usually swim that pretty fast."

Manitoba Masters meet manager Paul Boulding said Timmerman actually broke four records on Saturday. His split time in the 100 free was 1:26 at the 50-metre mark -- a new world mark -- as was his overall time.

chris.cariou@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 21, 2009 B10

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