A SWIMMER tipped as a potential Olympian of the future is already top of the podium when it comes to first-aid skills, learned with the Hucknall and Linby division of St John Ambulance.
For Grace Dickens (11) proved she is a star in and out of the pool — after helping a friend who sustained a nasty cut during a swimming session.
Quick-thinking Grace knew just what to do when her pal got into trouble after cutting her leg on the steps leading to the water at the Ken Martin pool in Bulwell.
Her training received each week at Seymour Road Baptist Church in Hucknall kicked in and she assessed the problem before taking her friend to the lifeguard for treatment.
Grace has been learning first aid for several years, initially as a young Badger and more recently as a cadet.
All St John Ambulance cadets are given the opportunity to learn basic lifesaving skills so that, in an emergency, they can be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.
Grace and her family see her training with St John as crucial, despite her heavy schedule.
The skills she has learned not only keep her safe in the water but also friends and teammates.
The youngster, who lives in Basford, has just moved to Ellis Guilford School in Basford and also swims six days a week.
She has already won six gold medals and several top trophies at club championships. In 2010, she was named Radford Swimming Club’s junior girls swimmer of the year.
According to mum Joy, who is county membership secretary with St John Ambulance Nottinghamshire, Grace is highly competitive.
Her ambition is to swim for Britain in the Olympics — just like her inspiration, double Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington, of Mansfield.
Currently, her standard is so high that Grace has been told she is swimming too fast for her own age group!