Tynan determined to reach London 2012 in memory of her late mother
LOWRI Tynan admits swimming has been her fortitude since the death of her mother in the summer - and is vowing to reach this year's Olympics in her memory.
DETERMINED: Lowri Tynan has vowed to reach this year's Olympics in memory of her late mother
Having earned selection for her maiden World Championships in 2009 and represented Wales at the Commonwealth Games in 2010, Tynan failed to reach last year's global gathering in Shanghai.
And it was during July's World Championships, when the 24-year-old, now based in Loughborough, was taking a break from the pool, that her mother Mair lost her 14-year fight with leukemia.
Tynan, a breaststroke specialist, has since used her preparations for the up-coming Olympic trials in March to cope with the loss and is determined to qualify as a tribute to her mother.
"She had leukemia for years, about 14, and it had been leading up for while and we kind of knew it was coming pretty soon," said Tynan - who is lending her support for British Swimming's Big Splash campaign.
"It has been pretty hard but it changes your perspective and since she has passed I have found a new drive to do it for her and do the best I can.
"Swimming has given me that routine I need, I still find it hard but swimming has given me that reason to get up and it makes me tired so I can sleep at night.
"Swimming has given me that stability to get through the grief. She used to tell me that I had lost my spark and her passing has given me the determination to get that spark - and I want to do well.
"I wish she could have seen it but it has inspired me. She was always so supportive and we were pretty close. She was quite old when she had me so we had to cram everything into a short time.
"But I would just love to be able to say that I did my best in her memory. I am feeling confident within myself and I am looking forward to racing."
In March of last year Tynan had failed to qualify for the World Championships at the first attempt - finishing seventh and fifth in the 100m and 50m breaststrokes in Manchester.
And at the second in Sheffield she again faltered - but having done so Tynan believes the pressure will be off in London in March allowing her to slip in under the radar.
"I am confident within myself but, if you had asked me if I was a fair few months ago, I would have been a little bit worried with the Games being so close but now I am really looking forward to it," she added.
"Because I haven't had the greatest year I feel like that takes the pressure off, people aren't thinking about me and not expecting me to do as much and that takes the pressure off.
"That means I can go in the way I want and if I have a bad swim people won't say anything and I won't have to worry about that."
British Swimming's Big Splash campaign is supported by principal partner British Gas, and supporting partners Kellogg's and Speedo. For more information on great swimming activities and offers visit www.bigsplash.co.uk
© Sportsbeat 2012