Michael Phelps’ coach Bob Bowman believes Jazz Carlin could be the next British swimming role model.
Despite a disappointing Olympics in London, Bowman believes Carlin could be the swimmer to inspire the next generation, following the retirement of double Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington last year.
“Rebecca did everything she was supposed to do and she moved on. That’s opened up the door for someone else and maybe Jazz Carlin will step up into her place,” said Bowman, who was attending UK Sport’s annual World Class Performance Conference in Manchester.
“She has a very good coach who knows what to do. She has shown the ability to have the speed necessary to swim in these events at the top level.
“She just has to really get it down now to do it at the main meet, not the meet before."
Carlin started her career on the biggest stage with a bang in 2009 when she helped Britain’s 4x200m freestyle relay team to World Championships bronze in Rome, adding individual silver and bronze in the 200m and 400m freestyle respectively at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
She missed the Olympics through illness and poor form but bounced back to dominate at this year's British Championships and was fourth in the 400m freestyle at the summer's World Championships in Barcelona.
“You need someone out there winning gold medals on a consistent basis and if you get one you’re going to get two or three or four. You notice that in all sports,” said Bowman.
“When Ian Thorpe got good in Australia you started having Grant Hackett and Michael Klim and the girls joined in. It’s the same in the States. When you have someone setting that standard and they can see it, it really gets everyone to believe that they can do it.
“I’ve always felt that you can’t put too much importance on one person, even Michael. He left, Ryan Lochte stepped up, Missy Franklin stepped up, there will be people.”
© Sportsbeat 2013