RESURFACING AT CROSSROADS
When Melanie Nocher finished seventh in her 200m backstroke heat at the London Olympics she was devastated. It wasn't supposed to end like that. She pulled herself out of the water and crawled to a nearby chair; her Olympic dream was dead.
Nocher's time of 2:16.29 was almost six seconds slower than her personal best (2:10.7). All the hours of training, the sacrifices, had amounted to nothing. Her body had failed her. She thought she was going to get crucified by the public for her poor performance. She felt she'd let everyone down. Read full article
STUDENT DIGS WERE NOT A DIVE
Olympic swimmer Melanie Nocher, headed east for a sports degree, and she found her stroke in an old terraced house in Leicestershire.
THE OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY
Melanie will be running with the Olympic Torch on June 5th in Portadow.
The Olympic Torch Relay will help shine a light on the whole of the UK – from dynamic urban areas to places of outstanding natural beauty. Torchbearers will carry the Flame through more than 1,000 cities, towns and villages in the UK.
Lit in Greece, the Olympic Flame arrives in the UK on 18 May 2012 before setting out the next day on a 70-day Olympic Torch Relay, bringing the excitement of the Games to everyone. The Olympic Flame stands for peace, unity and friendship. It will be carried by 8,000 truly inspirational Torchbearers. Find out more
NOCHER AND McMAHON QUALIFY FOR OLYMPIC GAMES
Melanie Nocher joined Sycerika McMahon this afternoon on the flight to the London Olympic Games as she dipped under the FINA A time in the 200m Backstroke final in Hungary. Nocher finished 5th overall in a new Irish Senior Record of 2:10.75. Ireland now has 4 swimmers qualified for London.
Having reached the A time earlier today McMahon was back in the pool in the 100m Breaststroke semi-final. Her time of 1:08.37 equalled the new Irish record she set earlier today and qualified her 5th fastest into tomorrow’s final. Fiona Doyle, who also swam the 100m Breaststroke semi-final this evening finished 12th overall in a time of 1:09.68. Doyle can still chase Olympic qualification in the 200m Breaststroke on Thursday.
Speaking afterwards Swim Ireland Performance Director Peter Banks said “It’s a great day for Irish Swimming, for both Sycerika and Melanie to produce great swims under big pressure was outstanding; we are obviously disappointed for Fiona, but very excited for the two girls”.
Both McMahon and Nocher are back in action again tomorrow. McMahon in the heats of the 200m Individual Medley and the final of the 100m Breaststroke and Nocher in the 100m Backstroke heats. Shani Stallard will also swim the heats of the 200m Individual Medley. Karl Burdis will compete in the 50m Backstroke heats and Nuala Murphy in the 800m Freestyle.
HOPING TO MAKE THE OLYMPIC STANDARD AT THE EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS IN HUNGARY
Melanie Nocher is through to this evening’s 200 metre backstroke semi-finals at the European Swimming Championships at Debrecen in Hungary. The Irish record holder is chasing the Olympic A qualifying time for the event and was third in her heat in a time of 2.13.09 which put her into tonight’s last 16 as the eighth fastest qualifier. Nocher, who swam at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, is targeting a sub 2.10.84 swim to make the London games and the Europeans is her last chance to qualify with the cut-off date of 31 May approaching. Beth Carson (50m butterfly), Karl Burdis (100m backstroke) and Nuala Murphy (400m individual medley all failed to progress from this morning’s heats.
IRISH TEAM ANNOUNCED FOR EUROPEAN SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS
Swim Ireland have announced their team for the 2012 European Senior Swimming Championships taking place in Debrecen, Hungary from 21-28 May. The seven strong squad will travel to the competition with hopes of achieving qualification for the summer Olympic Games in London, in their individual events as well as in the women’s 4x200m Freestyle relay team. The team are Karl Burdis, Bethany Carson, Fiona Doyle, Sycerika McMahon, Nuala Murphy, Melanie Nocher and Shani Stallard.
NOCHER TRIUMPHS BUT MISSES OLYMPIC QUALIFICATION
Melanie Nocher's attempts to qualify for her second successive Olympics Games fell short on day three of the Carlton National Swimming Championships at the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin. Nocher comfortably won the final of the 200 metres backstroke, but her winning time of two minutes 11.81 seconds was a second shy of the A standard required. Read full article
NOCHER WARMS UP WITH PERSONAL BEST IN 100M BACKSTROKE
Olympic hopeful Melanie Nocher swam a new personal best to win the women’s 100m backstroke on day two of the Irish Open Long Course Championships yesterday. Nocher shaved almost three-tenths of a second off her semi-final time to win in 1:01.92, well outside the Olympic qualifying standard, but her main focus will be on the 200m backstroke when it begins in Abbotstown today. Read full article
NOCHER AIMS FOR LONDON
Olympic hopefuls Melanie Nocher and Sycerika McMahon will bid to join Grainne and Barry Murphy at the London games this evening. The duo race in their number one events at the Carlton National Swimming championships and Olympic trials at the NAC in Dublin. Nocher, the 2008 Beijing Olympian, swims the final of the 200 metres backstroke in which she is the Irish record holder bidding to go below 2:10.78 seconds. Read full article
LONELY PASSION OF OUR OLYMPIC DREAMERS
Melanie Nocher, was so proud to represent Ireland in the Beijing Games four years ago that she had the celebrated Olympics logo tattooed on to her neck soon after her return. The swimmer from Holywood, Co Down, is hoping to make it to the London Olympics this summer, where an appearance in "the semi-final, or final, even" would delight her."There are two types of athletes," she says, "realists and dreamers. I'm a realist. There's no point me sitting here and telling you that I'm going to win a gold medal because I'm just not at the level you need to be at to swim that fast. It's as simple as that, and I'm okay with it." Read full article
LUCK OF THE IRISH: PETER BANKS IS BACK ON THE POOL DECK
Brandon still feels like home for Peter Banks, the former head coach of the Brandon Bluewave Swim Team. For the past two weeks, Banks has had four members of Irish National Team training at the Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center. The swimmers have taken in every word of knowledge Banks has spoken, as they prepare for Irish Nationals, just seven weeks away. Read full article | Watch video
MELANIE WINS BRONZE AT EUROPEAN SHORT COURSE CHAMPIONSHIPS
Belfast swimmer Melanie Nocher clinched her first major championship medal as she took bronze in the 200m backstroke final at the European Short Course Championships in Poland on Sunday.
Nocher, 23, set her second Irish record of the day as she clocked 2:04.29 in Sunday afternoon's final in Szczecin.
The Irish team member had cut .62secs off her national record in the morning heats with a 2:05.00 clocking.
Ukraine's Daryna Zevina won the gold in a championship record of 2:02.25.
That left her over a second clear of Spain's Duane Da Rocha Marce (2:03.32) with Nocher third ahead of Germany's Jenny Mensing (2:05.48).
Nocher's previous best major championship performance was a fifth place in the 200m backstroke at the 2008 European Short Course Championships.
The Northern Ireland swimmer's medal should be a major boost to her confidence ahead of her attempts to ensure qualification for next summer's London Olympics.
Nocher's morning heat time had qualified her second fastest for the final.
The Belfast swimmer pulled out of Saturday's 400 freestyle final to concentrate on her specialist 200m backstroke.
Nocher set two Irish records in Thursday's 100m backstroke as she finished 15th overall.
COCA-COLA SURPRISE YOUNG PEOPLE IN NORTHERN IRELAND MAKING IT THROUGH TO FINAL STAGE OF OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY NOMINATION CAMPAIGN
Coca-Cola informs a selection of ‘Future Flames’ that they’re just one step away from carrying the Olympic Flame during London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay next year.
Coca-Cola today announced that local teenagers, Aymen McGonigle (15) from Maghera, Lucy Camlin (16) from Antrim and Peter Brittain (18) from Bangor have made it through to the final stage of becoming a London 2012 Olympic Torchbearers, thanks to Coca-Cola, during the Olympic Torch Relay next year.
Lucy, Peter and Aymen; all extraordinary young people who have a burning passion which brings happiness to others – were handed an invitation to carry the Olympic Flame next year.
MEL AIMS TO BE IN FAST LANE TO LONDON
Melanie Nocher has enjoyed the “crazy” experience of the Olympics and is determined to enjoy it even more in London 2012.
This Friday at the Dutch Open swimming championships in Eindhoven, Nocher will bid to hit the golden A time of 2:10.80 in the 200m backstroke to book her spot in London. So far, only one Irish swimmer has qualified, Dubliner Barry Murphy.
Nocher, a member of Ards ASC, admits she didn't do herself justice at the World championships in the summer and is determined to fulfil her potential by qualifying for London. Click here to read more
THE RACE IS ON FOR NORTHERN IRELAND’S FUTURE FLAMES
Last chance to nominate your ‘Future Flames’ for the chance to carry Olympic Flame for Coca-Cola’s London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay
Belfast, Friday 26th August 2011: Northern Irish Olympic Swimming hopeful Melanie Nocher today joined forces with Coca-Cola to remind young people here that the closing date to nominate ‘Future Flames’ to carry the Olympic Flame during the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay is Monday September 5th.
To recognise and reward the positive contributions made by young people every day, Coca-Cola, a Presenting Partner of the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay, is calling on everyone in Northern Ireland to nominate the Future Flames they know: young people who use their passion in areas like sport and physical activity, music and dance, and community and the environment; to spread happiness in their local communities. Nominations can be made at www.cokezone.ie.
Melanie Nocher said: “It’s a great privilege to be involved with Coca-Cola’s ‘Future Flames’ campaign. As a sportsperson, the Olympics is obviously the pinnacle of my sporting career, but the great thing about the ‘Future Flames’ nomination campaign is that it gives everyone the chance to get involved; whatever your passion. The chance to carry the Olympic Flame is an amazing accolade and I would encourage everyone to take the opportunity to nominate.”
James Williams, Director, Olympic Torch Relay, Coca-Cola commented: “We have had a phenomenal response to our ‘Future Flames’ campaign since we launched in Northern Ireland back in July. With just over a week left we want to remind everyone to get nominating before our deadline of September 5th. Visit cokezone.ie to give inspirational young people you know the chance to carry the Olympic Flame next summer.”