Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers is happy to stay in the dark about his swimming rivalsThe unique approach Kyle Chalmers used to win a shock Rio gold has again been adopted by the Olympic champion ahead of the Commonwealth Games: ignorance is bliss.
Choosing the pool over AFL may have worked out okay for mad Port Adelaide fan Chalmers after stunning the world with his 100m freestyle triumph in Brazil.
But the 19-year-old frustrated footballer admits he still isn’t a big fan of the swimming caper and just like Rio didn’t have a clue who were his main threats on Games debut on the Gold Coast.
“I have no idea,” he said of the 100m freestyle field.
“I don’t follow swimming really to be honest with you.
“I have no idea what happened in Glasgow (2014 Games).
“All I know is that (teammates) Cam (McEvoy) and Jack (Cartwright) are in there and that’s all that matters to me.”
Chalmers adopted the same philosophy when he upset a world class Rio field at just 18 to become the first n man to claim 100m freestyle gold in 48 years.
Life has finally returned to normal for Chalmers after his Rio success.
He still gets stopped on the streets of Adelaide for selfies but he’s happily distracted himself with a life out of the pool, mainly with AFL and his left-field fondness for bluetongue skinks.
But Chalmers admitted it was getting harder to adopt his oblivious approach to racing now that he has arrived on the Gold Coast with a target on his back.
“Swimming is just a bit of fun,” he said. “To do it on home soil is even better because we don’t have to travel as far so that’s cool.
“I am as relaxed as I was in Rio so we will see how we go.”
Chalmers took the alternate route to his first Commonwealth Games, claiming an Olympic crown before securing Gold Coast selection by nailing his first national 100m freestyle title last month.
But there is no way he feels like the “alpha” on the Coast.
“I am a rookie again,” he admitted.
“I am just excited to race on home soil and have my family come to watch especially my grandparents up in the stands who have never been at an international competition before to watch me race.”
Swimming starts on Thursday with the men’s 100m freestyle final on Sunday night.