Chad le Clos exclusive: Swimming sensation pays tribute to his parents

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Swimming sensation Chad le Clos, paid tribute to his parents in an exclusive interview with GiveMeSport, admitting that all of his success achieved at just 22-years of age would never have been possible if it wasn't for the support and encouragement they have always shown.

Record equaling haul

World, Olympic and Commonwealth Champion, Le Clos, collected seven Commonwealth medals in a single Games when he claimed bronze in the 4x100m medley relay to equal the legendary Australian Ian Thorpe's haul of seven medals he achieved in Manchester back in 2002.

He also surpassed the Australian with an overall tally of 12-medals across two Games, drawing him level with compatriot and team-mate Roland Schoeman and only one behind another Australian, Michael Wenden, the most decorated Commonwealth swimmer of all-time, another record that the 22-year old will have his sights set on in four-years time.

Over the six-days of competition, the 22-year old superstar claimed double gold in the 100m and 200m butterfly, silver in the 4x100m relay and four-bronze in the 50m butterfly, 200m individual medley, 4x200m freestyle relay and the 4x100m medley relay.

It was a monumental effort by the 22-year old South African and an achievement that would have pushed his mental and physical boundaries to breaking point in order to achieve what he described as a: "life-long dream."


Le Clos, a world record holder and double FINA World Cup Champion, famously edged Michael Phelps by 0.05 seconds in the 200m butterfly to claim gold at the London Olympics and it was at that moment, watching fans first became aware of how close and supportive his mother and father have been following an emotional interview conducted with his father Bert, immediately after his stunning win.

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In another touching moment during the Glasgow Games, Le Clos climbed into the stands to his parents and handed over the silver medal he had just received for his contribution to the 4x100m relay team, a selfless and moving gesture by the 22-year old that showcased the sheer class of the man.

When asked about the role his parents have played in his career, the swimmer paid tribute to his mom and dad saying: "I would never be here if it wasn't for my parents. The way they have supported me since I was a young kid through everything I have done has made me the person I am today.

"They are always watching me from wherever, even when I was younger when they never use to travel with me, they were always back home supporting me.

"It is an incredible feeling to know I have two great parents and one celebrity dad. It was special to give my medal to them and make them feel part of the team that they definitely are."

Up close and personal with the Le Clos family


Ever since that 2012 interview with the BBC, father Bert, has become somewhat of a celebrity in the UK, and of course back home in South Africa.

The camera regularly catches him poolside passionately supporting his son with a series of fist-pumps, and normally wearing a shirt that reminds everyone of where they hail from.

The 22-year old shared a great moment with us involving his Dad and Richard Branson that happened a year or so ago, when the Virgin boss gave both his father and himself a shirt with a statement on.

Le Clos recalled the incident: "I have a photo of that. It was a campaign about your statement. Mine was, 'Addicted to Gold', while my dad's was, 'More Famous than my Son'."

The amazing success of Chad le Clos has clearly not gone to his head. He remains a grounded, extremely likeable and humble person.

In a recent interview, his father Bert said that himself and his wife Geraldine, take absolutely no credit for his success.

What they certainly can take all the credit for is how the man has turned out.

For more on our exclusive interview with the World, Olympic and Commonwealth Champion, Chad le Clos stay tuned to GiveMeSport.

Follow Chad on his world record and medal winning exploits around the world on his Facebook.

Chad le Clos
Commonwealth Games

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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