Born on 12th of May 1970
Mark Foster was born May 12, 1970 in Billericay, Essex, England and is a British swimmer, specialising in butterfly and freestyle at 50 metres.
Foster was picked for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, making him the oldest member of the Great Britain Olympic team. He is a specialist in the short course (25 metre pool) discipline. Foster is amongst the most successful British swimmers of all-time. He retired from competitive swimming after the made a surprise comeback at the national championships in July 2007 winning both events he swam in. Foster had announced his retirement from swimming after the European short course championships in April 2006 while at the age of 35. He achieved the fifth best time in 2007 in the world at 50 metres freestyle.
Foster was first taught by the mother of Sarah Hardcastle at a pool in Southend-on-Sea. He was the fastest swimmer in the country by age 15.
Mark Foster was educated at Alleyn Court Preparatory School in Westcliff on Sea, Millfield School, and Southend High School for Boys where he showed early prowess in athletics, football and tennis.
Foster was first selected for the British team in 1985 and his big breakthrough came in 1990 when he won bronze in the Commonwealth Games in Auckland. He finished the 50 metres freestyle with a time of 23.16 seconds. He had previously won bronze as part of the 100 metre freestyle relay in the previous games held in Edinburgh.
Foster broke the World Short Course freestyle record four times, the World Short Course butterfly record twice, and set the World Long Course butterfly record (in 1996) with a time of 24.07 seconds.
In 2004 he was not selected for the Olympic Games. At the British Olympic Trials, he won the 50 free in 22.49 seconds, well under the Olympic qualifying standard but seven hundredths of a second below the standard National Team Director Bill Sweetenham had set for inclusion in the British Olympic Team.
Foster proved that he was easily up to Olympic standard later in 2004 with a stunning gold in the World Short Course Championships in Indianapolis.
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