London 2012 Olympics: Carry’s nerves for fiancee will make spectating a hard role
TO DAVID Carry, swimming in the Aquatics Centre was a piece of cake, but the prospect of watching his fiancée, Keri-Anne Payne, taking on the 10km open water swim today is something he describes as “absolutely terrifying”.
The couple will get married next month presuming the pair of them get through the rigours of this fiendishly difficult day in the water.
“It’s going to be so much more difficult than me walking to the blocks as I’ve no control over what happens,” says the Aberdonian. “It’s a two-hour race and quite physical and she’s one of the pre-Games favourites so externally there is a huge amount of pressure. I’m certainly feeling that pressure for her. She isn’t, funnily enough, as she’s swimming so well and excited about the event. But for the first time I know how my parents feel when they’re watching me. It’s weird and to think how calm and confident I am every time I go out to race and to have it taken from me is such a weird feeling.”
It’s a strange sport that Payne competes in. She has spoken in the past of the bizarre things she encountered – dead dogs, jellyfish and sharks.
“The funny thing is she doesn’t even like the competitive side to it,” says Carry. “It’s just one of those sports she happened to find she was quite good at it and she grew up doing it in South Africa. It was a family outing every week and they would do these swims and it was a nice lifestyle and something for the kids to do and suddenly she has found herself doing these 10kms and she’s incredibly good at it.”
Carry tried it once himself and couldn’t hack it.
“I’ve tried it and it was so hard - in South Africa a serene, beautiful location, the sun was perfect, it was an easy course and I struggled so badly. We did four laps of 2.5km and I lost count. I’m so used to doing a three-minute event and really concentrate for that amount of time and I found myself getting completely disorientated. It was really crazy, how she can have the presence of mind till the end of the race is incredible.”
What’s his plan for the event, then? To watch or not to watch? “We’re going as a whole swimming team so we’ll see a third of the course from the stand,” he said. “I’ll have to go for wanders every now and again and pace expectantly up and down the back rooms. I’ll be cheering and shouting like everyone else.”
Carry also spoke of the Commonealth Games in 2014 and whether he will make it there. “The pull of that event is just going to be so hard to resist, but I’ve always said I would not make the call now or else I’d keep swimming for evermore. I’m in the shape of my life and I got my best ever result at the Olympics, doing my best times ever. Such an awesome feeling.
“I’m desperate to be involved with Glasgow 2014 in whatever role I could fulfil and to create the best impact for Glasgow - that’s the one I’ll go for. I’m getting married in six weeks and after that I’ll sit down and have a good think and make some decisions then. I’ll have hard discussions with coaches, friends and family.”
In the meantime, he’s got a stressful day ahead watching his fiancée battling the elements in her own quest for gold.
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