KYLE Chalmers is still getting used to people stopping him to ask for photographs and autographs as he walks down the street.
Two months ago he was an unknown to most people apart from family, friends and serious swimming supporters but after winning gold in the men’s 100 metres freestyle at the Rio Olympics last month he has become a famous face.
“It’s a little bit out of control,” Chalmers said.
“The Olympics is like a five-week bubble – you leave and no one knows who you are and you come back and everyone knows who you are.”
But as with everything, the 18-year-old seems to be taking all the extra attention in his stride.
Chalmers has had a packed schedule since returning from Rio with Adidas commitments in Germany and Rio and a holiday in London as well as a few appearances and welcome home events in Australia but he is looking forward to getting back to Port Lincoln this weekend and “breathing that fresh country air”.
“I can’t wait to get over there.”
Although he said the three-day trip would not be long enough.
Chalmers said he was looking forward to seeing the people of Port Lincoln who had given him so much support.
When he returns home to Adelaide he will dive into a month of hard training before the World Championships in Japan and Singapore followed by the short course trials and he hopes to qualify for the FINA World Swimming Championships at the end of the year.
Away from the pool he will be heading to Melbourne next week for some appearances at the AFL grand final and then to the Gold Coast for a birthday.
But this weekend, the people of Port Lincoln will have him all to themselves as the city celebrates its latest gold medallist with a community event on the foreshore from 10.15am.
Official proceedings will start at 11am with Chalmers to be joined by family and friends on stage to share his Olympic story.