By Ben Hart, Sportsbeat
It took two broken collarbones and ‘hating’ the sport for swimmer Henry Baker to discover his potential as the next Duncan Scott.
A keen rugby player in his youth, the University of Stirling student only took swimming seriously after six months rehabilitating in the pool following a second collarbone injury sustained through rugby.
And just a year later in 2018, Baker claimed bronze in the 50m freestyle at the British Summer Championships and has now represented Great Britain at the European Junior Swimming Championships, fuelling his desire to one day compete at the Olympic Games.
But Baker, 19, confessed that he did not always think that competitive swimming was for him.
“When I started swimming, I thought I was never going to race. I hated it,” said Baker, who benefits from financial support from Boost Drinks – a company born over 20 years ago with a vision of energising everybody in every way and is committed to supporting its local communities, whether this be fuelling them with its range of Sports, Energy, Iced Coffee, and Protein Drinks, or by getting more involved to help them achieve their goal.
— Boost Drinks (@Boost_Drinks) November 5, 2022
“I thought there's no way in hell I was going to race, but then I raced at a small meet, won the event and it’s all been upwards from there.”
SportsAid supports over 1,000 athletes each year – in the early stages of their career – by providing them with a financial award to help towards training and competition costs.
These athletes are Great Britain's brightest sporting prospects, nominated to SportsAid by the national governing bodies of more than 60 sports based on set criteria from each.
And now that Baker is firmly on the path to senior international representation, he is happy to admit that with the benefit of hindsight, his injury was something of a blessing in disguise.
“I've had a lot of injuries in my life, especially because of rugby,” he added..
“If I could go back, I would still take that injury, because I'm so glad with where I've ended up after that.
“It was a bad thing to have, but then obviously it’s one of the best outcomes I could have possibly hoped for in terms of the future of my sporting career.”
Boost Drinks provides young athletes with financial support, recognition, and personal development opportunities through its partnership with SportsAid. Each athlete receives a £1,000 award which contributes towards costs such as travel, accommodation, and equipment – for more information visit www.boostdrinks.com