Jemma Lowe to put Olympic heartache behind her and make breakthrough

OLYMPIC FINAL: Jemma Lowe
OLYMPIC FINAL: Jemma Lowe

JEMMA Lowe plans to “carry on” with her career but is desperate to make a big “breakthrough” at the top level.

That was the assessment today of dad, Mike, in the aftermath of the Hartlepool swimmer’s sixth place in the Olympic 200 metres butterfly final on Wednesday night.

J Lo produced a fine and positive swim and was in the bronze medal position for over half the race, only to miss out on the podium by 1.33 seconds.

Even if the 22-year-old never swam again, she has enjoyed an excellent career at the top level – two visits to the Olympic and Commonwealth games, plus World and European full and shortcourse championship final appearances.

She has tasted medal success with a bronze at the Commonwealths in Delhi two years ago, plus a silver at the World shortcourse even in Dubai.

However, Mike admits Jemma is looking to translate some of the immense promise displayed at the Intensive Training Centre in Swansea into the major international competitions.

J Lo went into Landon 2012 as the fifth fastest 200 butterflier this year, but was unable to replicate that in the final at the Aquatic Centre, clocking two minutes 6.8 seconds.

“Jemma needs a breakthrough,” Mike told SportMail.

“She must be looking to win or get a medal at one of the big competitions.

“She needs to translate what she’s been doing in training into a top event.

“She is capable of doing a 2:04, she certainly has that in her.

“Jemma has got to say ‘I’ve got that [time] in me and I am at that level’.

“She made the final which was the target and will guarantee her funding for at least a year which is re-assuring.

“But she was in the mix for a medal for most of the final and if she had swum a low 2:05 then she’d have medalled.

“Jemma needs to do what she does in training in the right place.

“I don’t think Jemma was necessarily disappointed with the result in London, but she was disappointed with the time.”

Lowe Snr said that his daughter will quickly bury any upset and has already stated her aim to compete in her third Olympiad – in Rio in 2016.

She will soon get back into training at Swansea with coach Bud McAllister.

“If Jemma gets to another Olympics we’ll be happy,” said Mike.

“I think she’ll go through a bit of grieving now I guess but once she’s past that she will press the re-set button and look at what she’s doing.

“Jemma will look at a plan to go forward in her career.

“As long as she is still enjoying the sport and capable of advancing then she is right to carry on.

“The Commonwealth Games are another home event [in Glasgow in 2014] and there are the Worlds to go at.”