Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Nostalgic visit from IBSC pioneer to rekindle memories more than 40 years old

7 Jan 2013 was an ordinary night at the Bandar Tun Razak swimming pool where IBSC members have their regular training. The monotonous session suddenly brightened up when Tim Maximoff, an ex-IBSC pioneer, made a stopover to the pool to touch base and rekindle his memories of being an IBSC swimmer in the late '60s.

For just a brief visit to Kuala Lumpur, Tim made an effort to meet up the present batch of swimmers and coaches, even though he has to brave the KL traffic, to feel the different training environment now compared to more than 4 decades ago.

Tim Maximoff (second from right) dropped by Bandar Tun Razak pool to visit the current generation of IBSC swimmers on 7 Jan 2013. 
Tim with IBSC coaches and committee members 

Tim shared his story with us.

"I was one of the original Ikan Bilis swimmers in the late 1960s.  I am coming back to KL for the first time since my family left in 1970.  It is a very short visit, from midday January 6 to late afternoon January 8.   I'd love to see what the old team is doing now.  Pretty impressive!  

I recall the Ikan Bilis team coached by David McJunkin at the Weld Pool.  I was on Ikan Bilis from age 8-10  and actually have a few awards and pictures saved from those days.  Would love to connect back the old timers from the late 1960s - 1970 era like the Lim sisters, Mark Chesterfield, Liu Chun Hoy.

Ikan Bilis had some good swimmers and a few later made the Malaysia Olympic team.  I recall going to Singapore and meets against our rival, Chinese Swim Club.   Also, meets at another pool near an apartment building where at least one race was started by a Malay army soldier with a rifle(!!) 

Since leaving KL in 1970, my family moved to Sydney, Australia.  There I swam with Ryde Swim Club, Forbes Carlisle as a coach, and had the pleasure of 4 great years in the pool.  After that, I moved back to the US and swam at the national level, but missed making the 1976 Olympic team.  In 1978 I went to Harvard University, where I also swam and played water polo. 

I am now living in California with my wife and 12 year old daughter (who, alas, is not aquatic)."

Award time in one of the meets which IBSC took part
Tim wearing a white T-shirt bearing the name Ikan Bilis 
The IBSC pioneer team at Weld Road swimming pool in 1970

The above photos were nicely preserved by Tim's late father over the years. Tim's parents contributed much to IBSC during its formative years. The information below shared by Tim provided valuable insight into the swimming era those days.

A 1969 program book of a swimming competition held at Weld Road swimming pool
The 1970 Junior Meet organised by the Selangor Swimming Association where KL and Selangor swimmers were grouped as one prior to the formation of Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur.
Part of the order of events in 1970 where it's strange that the breaststroke was termed as "kuak tiarap", literary translated to be the style of facing-down 
Part of 1971 Malaysian Junior Meet results showing Tim as the top swimmer under the Boys U10 years category

Tim has had a commendable success in competitive swimming and some of his earlier achievements are extracted below.

The New Straits Times - 20 Oct 2001 featuring Today in History in 1971 of Tim's swimming achievement in Australia.

The Sydney Morning Herald-  Dec 17, 1973

California Interscholastic Federation, Central Coast Section - Swimming History showing Tim's record in 500m freestyle

IBSC truly appreciates Tim's visit and hope that he will return again to Kuala Lumpur in the near future.

Stay online and watch out for our next chapter of IBSC History.

If you are reading this and you're an ex-Ikan Bilis member, please contact us at ibsc.swimmers@gmail.com to share your swimming history. Ex-IBSC members can also join IBSC ALUMNI group in Facebook too to re-connect with your friends and former training mates.

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