Gold haul for Greenbank

GOLDEN: Allan Greenbank picked up a good medal haul at the South Australian Masters Games, walking away with five individual gold medals and two team gold medals.
GOLDEN: Allan Greenbank picked up a good medal haul at the South Australian Masters Games, walking away with five individual gold medals and two team gold medals.

At the ripe age of 57, local teacher Allan Greenbank is still swimming just as well as he ever has.

Allan, more commonly known as Mr Greenbank at Stuart High School, brought home seven gold medals from the Port Pirie Masters Games.

Five of those were individual medals in the 100m backstroke, 100m freestyle, 50m butterfly, 50m freestyle and 50m backstroke. The two team medals were for the 4x50m medley relay and the 4x50m mixed freestyle relay.

Incredibly, the times Mr Greenbank clocked in the 50m sprint events were the same times he achieved at his last Masters Games 10 years prior.

Mr Greenbank has been swimming competitively since he was 13 and has been competing in the Masters Games every 10 years since age 35.

"It's nice to know that as you age you still have some of those talents you had when you were younger," he said.

"Your heart rate still spikes when you get up on that block to dive in. You still feel very nervous before a race."

Asked how he managed to keep his sprint swimming times the same 10 years apart, Mr Greenbank said his training had been sporadic but his experienced helped him make good times on the first day.

"You need to keep up a certain level of training but I feel that once you have that base level in any sport, you can keep operating at that level as long as you still do some training," he said.

Now he plans to enter the Games more often with the goal of encouraging other swimmers in Whyalla to compete.

Mr Greenabnk said there was potential for forming a Masters Games swimming club in Whyalla as well as an Iron Triangle Masters event featuring swimmers from Port Augusta and Port Pirie.

"The other swimmers from Port Pirie and Port Augusta mentioned that that's something they would like to see happen," she said.