Cayman’s two Olympic swimmers, brothers – Shaune and Brett Fraser – compete in the World Championships from today.
The opening ceremony in Rome, Italy was on Wednesday and competition goes on until August 2.
Shaune, 21, competes in the butterfly at 50, 100 and 200 metres and also the 100m and 200m freestyle.
Brett, 19, is in the backstroke at 50m, 100m and 200m and also the freestyle 50m, 100m and 200m.
The Frasers are both studying at the Universtiy of Florida and swim for the fabled Gators team that includes American superstar Ryan Lochte who was recently here to start the Flowers Sea Swim.
Lochte was frustrated at not being able to compete here because it would have interfered with his training schedule for the world championships but he promised to come back next year to do it.
Shaune said: ‘We’ve been doing really well in training, pushing each other every day and we all expect to do well in Rome.’
Local coach Dominic Ross said: ‘I think Shaune expects to qualify for a semi-final or maybe a final, he has the capability of doing that and Brett gets the chance to race against the world’s best.
‘He’s still getting the experience that Shaune obviously has. Not too many expectations from him but I expect him to do well too.’
The Frasers have the benefit for being coached and training with some of the world’s best. Anthony Nesty, the 1988 Olympic champion is one of their coaches.
Lochte is bound to be scooping up a clutch of medals with the United States team.
The Americans won a leading 36 medals, including 20 golds at the 2007 worlds in Australia.
Michael Phelps, who earned seven golds as a prelude to his record-setting performance at the Beijing Olympics, is back to swim in three individual sprint events and likely all three relays in Rome.
Olympians Dara Torres, Aaron Peirsol and Lochte will grab headlines, but there are plenty of inexperienced youngsters joining them.
At 42, Torres is practically a senior citizen next to Elizabeth Pelton, 15. The youngster from the same North Baltimore club as Phelps will swim the 50m, 100m and 200m backstroke events in the biggest meet yet of her young career.