Gil Levy has been brought into Team Maccabi GB’s Swimming set-up for the European Maccabi Games 2015 in Berlin.
Internationally renowned, Levy is considered to be one of the top coaches for young swimmers in the world; having mentored Olympic gold medallist, Olympic record-holder and four-time world record-holder, Cameron van der Burgh, as well as many other elite athletes. These include the 2010 European Junior champion bronze medallist and British record-holder, the 2011 Junior World Championship bronze medallist, the 2012 USA American National Championship bronze medallist, the five-time British 2013 National Age Group champion and the 2013 Dutch Age Group 800m champion and European Youth Olympic Games qualifier.
His work has seen him appointed as Elite Squad coach for the Hillingdon Borough Elite Swim Team and coach for the England Talent Development Program. Levy’s achievements are further underlined when he recently won the ‘Runner-Up’ prize in the London Active Sports Coach of the Year Awards. What makes his success even more remarkable is that his full-time job is as a school teacher. He also performs additional duties as an I.T. Subject Leader and Year Group Leader whilst studying towards a Master’s Degree in Education.
Although having never previously represented Team Maccabi GB in any capacity, many of the swimmers he coached at club level appeared at the 19th Maccabiah Games in Israel this summer, giving Levy a close affiliation to the movement.
Speaking about his appointment, Gil Levy said: "Being appointed to the Team Maccabi GB Swim Team is exciting and a new challenge. My aim is to seek out all the British, Jewish swimmers across all the age groups from around the country for the European Maccabi Games - there was almost only Londoners in Israel in July [at the 19th Maccabiah Games] - and bring them together to compete as ambassadors for British Jewry in Berlin.
"I want to instil in them a sense of 'team', striving for and pursuing excellence whilst creating a sense of both British and Jewish pride and the sense of overcoming barriers and personal achievement.
"I really want for them to experience something so incredible and exciting that it whets their appetite to continue to excel, not only as athletes in their chosen sport for Team Maccabi GB, but beyond; within themselves as young people, preparing for adult life."
Levy will predominantly act as coach and manager for the Junior age category. However, if Maccabi GB is able to acquire a number of Open athletes, he will oversee this team as well.