Clackmannanshire Sports Council

Connecting, developing and championing sport and physical activity in Clackmannanshire

Tillicoultry's Keanna chosen for Team GB swim team at Paris Olympics

A Tillicoultry woman has been selected for the Team GB swimming team at this summer’s Paris Olympics.  Keanna MacInnes, 22, will travel with the team to France for the competition and has credited her art and design course at college with helping her reach the top level.  At the Olympics this year, she will be aiming to reach the final of the 200 and the 100 metre races, as well as a relay or two.

Her initial reaction to making the team was disbelief, but she admitted this is a dream come true for her.  Keanna said:

“At the moment, it feels a bit unusual making the team.  I have been dreaming of it my whole life and now I have been selected, it does feel a little overwhelming, but exciting at the same time.  It probably won’t feel real until I am out at the games themselves.  I am looking forward to competing in Paris and focusing on getting as close to a medal as possible and at least aiming to make the final of the 200 and maybe the 100 metres butterfly races.   I just missed out on qualifying for Tokyo in 2020, but the good thing about this year’s games is that it will be easier for my family to travel over to support me.”

Originally from Edinburgh, Keanna likes to paint swimming scenes on her course, finding the creativity offered on the course to be the perfect psychological diversion from her training programme.  Her regime includes training four hours a day, 10 sessions a week at the University of Stirling National Swimming Academy, two of which are in the gym.  She started swimming at the age of 13, initially at the Grove Swimming Club and then to the Heart of Midlothian Swimming Club before landing a place at the National Swimming Academy.

Originally a BSc Psychology graduate from the University of Stirling, Keanna now studies BA Art and Design at Forth Valley, which she hails as being the perfect way to switch off from her intense training programme.  She continued:

“I enjoy the art and design course very much as it helps me switch off from swimming.  I would recommend it as it is a very practical course and allows creative people to try new things like glasswork and printing, things that I would never have had the resources to try myself.  The course allows me to be creative and have fun and take my mind off swimming and competition.  I quite like the distortion that water makes when someone is swimming and I also like the way the light comes off the water on top and below the surface, that inspires me in my artwork.”

Keanna will join the other 29 members of the Team GB team on July 17 for a pre-games training camp before the Olympics begin.

Kenny MacInnes, principal of Forth Valley College, added:

“I would like to wish Keanna all the best at the Olympic Games and let her know that everyone at the College will be cheering for her in Paris.  Just being selected for the team is an amazing achievement, she will be an Olympian and a Forth Valley College student forever and we are very proud of her.”

For more information on FVC’s Art and Design course, visit forthvalley.ac.uk.

Thanks to Chris Faulds from the Alloa Advertiser for this article, which you can read here