Dragons Swimmers compete against world's best Primary tabs
By Celia Gaier, Grade 12, East Campus
Competing against the world’s best at the FINA/airweave Swimming World Cup 2016 was merely a dream until this year when Liam, Lachy, Georgina and I qualified to participate. As an early season meet there were no pressures or expectations except doing our best and most of all enjoying the experience.
Day 1 started with a bit of nervousness not knowing where to swim in the warm up without disturbing the world class athletes. The reality started to appear; we were going to swim with the top swimmers of each country. A few hours later the heats kicked off with personal bests (PBs) all around in Lachy’s 100 freestyle, Georgina’s 200 freestyle, Liam’s 100 backstroke and my 100 butterfly. Other amazing swims for Liam in his 50 butterfly against Ben Proud and Georgina’s 800 free swimming in the same heat as Katinka Hosszu and eventually finishing 12th overall, as well as Lachy’s 400 freestyle beasting it out next to James Guy.
Day 2 rolled on easier as we warmed up in the 25m competition pool, preparing ourselves for the last few races were still to swim. The first men’s event started off with Lachy’s 200 freestyle smashing his PB going under the 2 minute barrier closely followed by Liam’s 100 butterfly against South African world record holder Chad le Clos with whom he had a nice chat with prior to racing. With little time Liam rushed back for his 50 backstroke with Australian star Mitch Larkin. The women’s 400 freestyle followed soon after with Celia’s PB and Georgina not far off hers. After two days of competition the last event for the heats rolled on with the women’s 50 butterfly where I competed against Katinka Hosszu.
This meet was an amazing opportunity for us as part of a school team yet qualifying for a competition with higher standards than we had ever experienced. Being able to talk to the best is an unforgettable experience which will definitely stay in our memories forever. Thank you to everyone who was there to support and our coaches who have made it possible for us to get here; who knows if in a few years after graduation one of us will be seen swimming at the World Cup for their respective countries or even standing on the podium.