Quinn Purchase is seen at the Arts and Culture Pool on Feb. 27. — Star photo by Geraldine Brophy
Quinn Purchase didn’t really need any prodding when it comes to hitting the pool on a daily basis, but now he’s motivated more than ever since finding out his efforts have been noticed by the provincial swimming body.
The 15-year-old budding swimmer with the Corner Brook Rapids found out recently that he’s been named to Swimming Newfoundland and Labrador’s provincial travel team as a junior member.
Purchase said he heard swirling talk about the possibility of being selected for the team, but he never got his hopes up because he was fully aware there were some keen athletes faster than him in the mix for one of six positions on the team.
“When my mom (Maureen Bradley) read her email and said ‘oh, you are on the provincial travel team’ I was over the moon about it. It was really exciting,” Purchase said. “The fact they only chose three boys and three girls for the junior team I was pretty blown away that they chose me.”
Purchase swims every day of the week except Sundays, but he makes up for his day of rest with two sessions on Fridays. He is a focused individual who wants to take his passion for swimming to the highest level he can obtain.
Being afforded a chance to travel with the elite to major swim events is something he feels will be in his best interest when he looks at his vision for the future.
He will test his mettle against some of the top swimmers in the country when the provincial junior team travels to the Hyack Youth Festival swim meet, May 16-18 in New Westminster, B.C.
“I think it’s going to be a great experience for my swimming career,” he said. “One of my coaches (Bruce Hamlyn) said before that this would be really good help for trying to make Canada Games because I’m going to be the optimum age when it happens in 2017. Like I’m going to be at the top group so this is really good training for it and experience.”
Talk to just about anybody in provincial swimming circles and a common theme is that Purchase has untapped potential and a strong work ethic.
However, knowing somebody recognizes him as a swimmer with potential for good things in the pool, this young man wants to amp up his training because he can’t afford to rest on his laurels if he wants to keep his spot on the team.
“It’s motivated me to train harder, to swim faster and try to make more and practices every week. Really try to get myself ready for this meet,” he said.
Duffy Earle, head coach of the Mount Pearl Marlins who recently took over the role of head coach for the provincial team, said Purchase is being groomed as one of the eligible male prospects for the 2017 Canada Winter Games team for the province.
She hasn’t seen a lot of Purchase so she expects the trip to B.C. will give her more insight into the young swimmer.
“This trip is going to be a good chance to get to know all the kids from throughout the province who are in that talent pool so that’s one of the big reasons why we do it,” Duffy said.
Despite not seeing a lot of him, Earle is quick to point out that Purchase has what it takes to make the team.
“He’s definitely a talented athlete,” she said. “He’s young and it’s going to help him to have opportunities like this where he can go offshore and compete against the bigger fields of competition.”