FAST New Team in Florida

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Jan. 4. SCOTT Barlow and Allan Williams, two of the most successful swim coaches in the Florida Gold Coast, have joined forces to start a new U.S. Swimming club team at Florida Atlantic University, reports Sharon Robb in today's Sun Sentinel.

Florida Atlantic Swim Team [FAST], an age group swim team comprised of swimmers from elite to novice, will train with both co-head coaches at the on-campus aquatic complex in Boca Raton, writes Robb.

"Barlow, 40, has coached swimming for 20 years, the last 11 at Delray Beach Aqua Crest. He will be joined by 2004 Olympic hopeful Rhi Jeffrey and several other Aqua Crest swimmers.

"Williams, 36, has coached swimming for 13 years, the past six at Pine Crest Swim Club's Boca Raton program. He will continue to coach his longtime swimmer Natalie Pike, who recently signed with the University of

"Jeffrey and Pike will get the chance to train together for the first time since they reached the elite level. They are training for the World Cup meet at the end of this month.

"Barlow and Williams will split coaching responsibilities and run the senior portion [13-and-over]. Holly McClain will handle the 12-and-under age group program.

"'It's a better opportunity and allows us a little more freedom,' said Barlow, who said he grew disenchanted with Palm Beach County's estrictions. 'There were parameters we couldn't go beyond. It was holding us back from moving forward.'

"Barlow, who coached part-time at FAU with college coach Steve Eckelkamp 10 years ago, first talked about starting a USS club then.

"'This will bring some immediate attention to FAU's school and program,' Barlow said. 'More than anything it is going to be the right environment to train for those who have aspirations of being in a top level program.'

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