Gary Gottschling will have a
big pair of
shoes to fill when he enrolls as a highly touted high school swimming
next fall at Royal Oak Kimball.
For the last three years Doug
as Michigan's top high school swimmer while at Kimball and last month
6'1", 180lb senior signed a grant-in-aid tender with Indiana.
But Gary just might live up
to all advance
notices. His credentials as a junior high and age-group swimmer are
Gottschling, who celebrated
his 14th birthday
last May 20, is similar in size and stature to Webster, Gary stands 6'1
and is 10lbs lighter at 170.
He made his competition debut
at 11 in
the 50-meter Oak Park recreation pool. The following year he proved
as a comer when he entered a national AAU four-mile marathon race on
Wyoga, in Ohio.
Webster won that event and
wound up among the top 15 finishers. Gary completed the distance in
one hour and 45 minutes.
The effort served as a
and, in looking back over his relatively short career, as tonic for the
Although the Gottschling home
at 23881 Jerome in Oak Park,
14-year-old Gary Gottschling shows
his winning backstroke
form. The youngster already has some 50 trophies, a few ribbons and
Gary is an eighth grade student at St. Paul Lutheran
in Royal Oak.
"We're about two miles from St.
I usually drive him to school," said his mother. "Sometime this summer
we're planning to move to Royal Oak so it'll be more convenient for
and also to be in the Kimball school district."
A year ago Gary chalked up
age-group swimming records in the 11-12 year old division as a
and bettered another existing mark.
He swam the 50-yard distance in
100 in 1:01.9 and the 50-meter in 32.1, all in the backstroke.
| He also was timed at 2:10.8 for the 200-yard
a short course, 20-yard pool in the 13 and 14-year-old bracket.
Gary already has a collection
of some 50
trophies, a few ribbons and more than 50 medals. The most prized award
is a silver cup which he won in an age-group mile race the day before
testing four-miler on Lake Wyoga. It was presented to him by the Lake
Association of the AAU.
On a national level two other
challengers loom for Gottschling in his bid for titles at various AAU
and outdoor meets in his own age bracket.
They are Duncan Scott, of
who holds some 18 records, and Bill Murtaugh, another fine stroker from
Gary actually is a native of
He was born during the Korean War when his father, John Gottschling,
an Army Air Corps pilot assigned to Fairchild Air Force base.
The senior Gottschling
completed 34 missions,
flying B-24 bombing raids in the South Pacific during World War II, and
then served as a B-29 instructor during the Korean conflict. His uncle
is Peter Salmen, the thoroughbred racing owner whose Crimson Satan won
the Michigan Mile in 1963 at the Detroit Race Course.
Gottschling now is a foreman in
here that manufactures plane parts.
In preparing for his impending
Gary will spend this summer as in the past, in daily workouts from 7 to
11 a.m. at Brennan Pool in Rouge Park under the watchful eye of Coach
During the winter season
most of his practice sessions with Webster at Patton Pool.
"When Gary first started to
the coaching of Harry Hauck (now at a private club in Puerto Rico),
was on top of the pile," recalled his father. "They developed a fine
and we'd take turns driving them over to Patton pool."
Many of Gary's swimming pals,
both at the
St. Paul school and at Patton, are also planning to enroll at Kimball
Coach Rick Fields. At Patton he was coached by Tom Sullivan."
Along with his summer practice
Gottschling also will compete as usual in five or six AAU sanctioned
at such sites as Cuyahoga Falls and Toledo in Ohio.
"In view of his prep career, it
that Gary will step up the tempo in racing competition." said his
His coach, Mr. Alsobrook, puts more emphasis on rigid training and
up endurance. But he should be ready for the Kimball challenge.
New Hope at Kimball
Leaves Big Gap