Absolute Insurance-supported athletes, Erika Fairweather and Lewis Clareburt, have officially made the New Zealand Olympic team for the 2024 Paris Games!


Jaynie Hudgell, Director of Absolute Insurance Ltd, with Erika Fairweather and Lewis Clareburt at the 2024 New Zealand Olympic Swimming Trials.

A strong team of nine swimming athletes has been named represent New Zealand at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

The team is led by current World Champions Lewis Clareburt (Waikato-Tainui) and Erika Fairweather (Ngāi Tahu). Clareburt won the 400m Individual Medley at this year’s Swimming World Championships in Doha, while Fairweather picked up her title in the 400m Freestyle, as well as winning silver in the 200m Free and bronze in the 800m Free.

“I’m so keen to get to Paris,” said Fairweather.

“It’s always special getting to compete at this level, so much hard work goes on behind the scenes to prepare for the Olympics and I can’t wait to showcase it.”

“Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be an Olympian, let alone going to my second Games,” added Clareburt.

“It’s a huge privilege, I can’t wait to represent New Zealand and put the pūkana on the world stage!”

They’re joined by fellow Tokyo Olympian Eve Thomas, who will also have a busy programme, contesting four events.

The other six athletes will make their Olympic debuts in Paris after swimming qualification times at the New Zealand Swimming Championships earlier this month.

Hazel Ouwehand (Pron Ou-wi-hand) was one of the standout performers at the meet, storming home in the Women's 100m Butterfly in a New Zealand record time of 57.43s, almost half a second under the Paris Olympic Games qualifying time.

“Going to the Olympics has been a dream of mine since I was super young so it’s pretty special to see it realised,” said Ouwehand.

“I’m really excited for the Games, it’s going to be an amazing field of athletes and I can’t wait to put all my hard work and training into action.”

For 200m Backstroke athlete Kane Follows the selection is particularly sweet. The 27-year-old has been on the cusp of making the national team for years, with the Paris Olympics to be his international representative debut.

“This has been a grind, I’ve missed a lot of teams but I’ve stuck at it, I’ve given so much to the sport and it feels so good to get this result,” said Follows.

“Sport is a lot of ups and downs but it’s all worth it for this feeling.”

Sprinters Taiko Torepe-Ormsby (Ngāi Tahu) and Cameron Gray are the other men in the Olympic squad. Torepe-Ormsby produced the fastest 50m Freestyle swim ever by a New Zealander (21.86s) as he qualified for Paris, while Cameron Gray beat his own New Zealand record in the 100m Freestyle.

Caitlin Deans and Laticia Leigh Transom round out the team, contesting the women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay alongside Fairweather and Thomas.

Swimming New Zealand Olympic Programme Lead Gary Francis says they’re excited about the potential of the squad.

“To have nine quality athletes heading to the Games is fantastic,” said Francis.

“We’ve got a great mix of experienced campaigners and exciting young talent in this team. We were thrilled with the times these athletes swum at the New Zealand Swimming Championships earlier this month and we’re expecting some special performances in Paris in a few months-time.”

NZOC CEO Nicki Nicol extended her congratulations to the athletes.

“We’re really pleased to have an exciting swim team heading to the Games with two World Champions to lead the charge,” said Nicol.

“We wish the athletes all the best with the rest of their training and we look forward to seeing them pull on the fern and represent New Zealand in Paris.”

The Paris 2024 swimming competition will be contested from July 27th to August 4th at the Paris La Defense Arena, the largest indoor events venue in Europe.

The full team is:

  • Erika Fairweather – Women’s 400m Freestyle, 200m Free, 800m Free, Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay
  • Eve Thomas - Women’s 400m Freestyle, 800m Free, 1500m Free, Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay
  • Lewis Clareburt – Men’s 400m Individual Medley, 200m IM, 200m Butterfly
  • Hazel Ouwehand – Women’s 100m Butterfly
  • Cameron Gray – Men’s 100m Freestyle
  • Kane Follows – Men’s 200m Backstroke
  • Taiko Torepe-Ormsby – Men’s 50m Freestyle
  • Caitlin Deans – Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay
  • Laticia Leigh Transom - Women’s 4x200m Freestyle Relay

Article source: https://www.olympic.org.nz/















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