Splash - May/June 2012 - (Page 48)

Jamie sqUiRe/Getty imaGes Best race eVer reBeCCA Watch video footage of this race as Rebecca soni recounts her best trials memory in this video: sOni the Best trials race i eVer swam M y best trials race ever was for the 200-meter breaststroke in Omaha, Nebraska in July 2008. My race was scheduled for the Fourth of July, so the stadium was decked out in red, white and blue to show support for the athletes. The atmosphere was electrifying! To calm the nerves, I kept reminding myself that it was just another race. I had swum the 200 breaststroke hundreds of times, and this was just one more time that I had to do it. I was pretty nervous because I really wanted to make the team, but at the same time I was also really confident that I could do it. I don’t remember much of the race itself, but I know I was in the lead on the last lap. I remember reminding myself to keep my head down and not look around at the other competitors and not to let my stroke fall apart. I touched the wall and saw that I won – I had made the Olympic team! It wasn’t a best time, but it was close. I was excited to see that I was so close to the American record. Making the team was such a sigh of relief for me and my coach, because we were training as if I was definitely going to Beijing. as told to rachel lutz 48 > MY Best race eVer Justin r., 15, De anza cupertinO aquatics > We want to know about your best race ever. Tell us all about it in no more than 250 words, and email it to us at splash@usaswimming.org. The best story we receive will be featured in the next issue of Splash! The Pacific record for 11-12 boys 50-meter breaststroke is 33.07. It had been deemed a lofty goal in September, perhaps even impossible. I disagreed right from the start. Nothing is impossible. So at 2009 JOs in the 50 breaststroke, there was a lot at stake. During finals that night, I felt absolutely on fire. I heard cheering from all around, not knowing where it came from, but I just kept stroking at a blistering pace, desperate to get to that wall. I heard names being spoken over the loudspeakers several times, but I just focused on my stroke, keeping it rapid and efficient. Burning with pain, I wanted to give up, but then I thought, “You know what, that’s ridiculous. This is my moment, right now!” I took those last few strokes in a blurred frenzy, and slammed both hands into the wall. In a split second, I instinctively threw my head around to look at the scoreboard, hoping for anything under 33.07. Staring back at me was 32.93. Hmm… 32.93. 32.93? 32.93? I started screaming and punching the water. 32.93! 32.93! I had done it. I had really broken the 33-second barrier! The announcer went crazy, and the cheers were ecstatic. It’s true, nothing is impossible. If you set lofty goals for yourself, there is so much joy in accomplishing them. From that experience, I learned that with faith, talent, lots of hard work, and a little bit of luck, I can do anything I set my mind to. splAsH • May/June 2012 • The TRIALS ISSue

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Splash - May/June 2012

Splash - May/June 2012
Contents
About Trials...
Mike Gustafson
Swim Briefs/Justin Case
Top Ten Tweets/Point-Counterpoint
Keys to Success
Training With
Athletic Foodie
Olympic Trials Preview
The Swimmers
Rank & File
Third Is No Charm
Repeat Performance
Trials Pressures
Behind the Scenes
The Venue
Alex Meyer
Making the Team
Interactive
Swim Nut Zeke
Ultimate Pump-Up Song
Best Race Ever
America’s Swim Team Athletes

Splash - May/June 2012

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