Swimming, Sausages, Mashed Potatoes and World Records: Danny’s Story – By John Rumsey (Danny’s Father) in collaboration with Interchange Australia
Daniel Rumsey is no stranger to hard work and dedication. He started swimming when he was eight years old, competing in the school carnivals in primary school at Exeter, and during his high school years at Moss Vale. He competed at Regional and District level, and at State level for many years. In 2005 we found out there was an international competition for swimmers with Down syndrome, so after making enquiries he signed up to join the Australian team to compete in Limerick, Ireland in 2006.
Australia was quite successful at that event, Danny bringing home many gold medals. He has competed in five World championships, winning many gold medals and named Top Man of the meet on two occasions. After the disappointment of withdrawing from the championships in 2012 due to ill health, we weren’t sure if he would compete in another world championship, however after successes in the National championships in 2015, he was invited to join the team to compete in Florence in 2016.
If Danny was going to defend his world records against the new young swimmers, he needed to get back into some serious training, so he started swimming in four squad sessions at Picton, two sessions in the new pool at Moss Vale after three gym sessions, per week. He competed in his fifth world championships in Florence, bringing home three gold and two silver medals, and participated in six relays which Australia won. He also broke his world record in the 200 metre breaststroke event, taking nine seconds off the record in the heats, and 1.5 seconds off in the finals, and set a new world record in the 100 metre breaststroke.
So what does all this have to with sausages and mashed potatoes? It was his 27th birthday when we got back home from Florence, and since Danny doesn’t eat anything sweet, never has, his Mum made his favourite ‘cake’, sausages, mashed potatoes, and baked beans.
In addition to his love of swimming, Danniel enjoys spending time with his girlfriend and going on outings with Interchange Australia. He is also a member of The Hidden Wonders, a band that is part of Interchange Australia’s Music Program. Daniel enjoys performing at local events, including the annual RockCan concert.