Gemma Johnson, a monthly winner in The Northern Star Southern Cross Ten Junior Sports Star of the Year award.
Gemma Johnson, a monthly winner in The Northern Star Southern Cross Ten Junior Sports Star of the Year award.

Gemma third to world No 1

By Steve Spinks

Ballina Indoor swimmer Gemma Johnson got the opportunity of her short sporting career when she competed against world 50m freestyle champion Libby Lenton at the recent Queensland Long Course Titles in Brisbane recently.

Lenton won, of course, but Johnson showed enough to suggest that she could loom as a possible threat to Lenton's crown in a few years time.

The 20-year-old Lenton was first, with 25-year-old Nichola Chellingworth second.

Johnson, at 15, was the youngest placegetter, in third spot.

But the Lennox Head swimmer wasn't satisfied with that fine effort.

She claimed gold in the 15-16 years 100m freestyle, bronze in the 15-16 years 100m butterfly and fifth in the Open 50m backstroke.

She also made the finals in the 15-16 years 100m backstroke and 15-16 years individual medley.

Clubmate Dean Mackay kept the medals coming Ballina Indoor's way with a silver in the 15-16 years 400m individual medley, which is one of the most taxing swimming races going around.

Mackay also claimed a bronze in the 15-16 years 400m freestyle and fourth in the 15-16 years 200m freestyle.

Another Ballina Indoor swimmer Lauren Casey sliced 10 seconds off her personal best time in the 100m butterfly.

She also swam a PB in the 100m breaststroke.



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