Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Start of the Season for Hyack Masters
Last night was our first practice and I was looking forward to seeing some new faces swimming ahead of me but was disappointed in this regard. Our best swimmer currently is Doug, who swam with us during the summer session and who had announced his intention to continue training with us over the winter, but tonight at least he didn’t show up. Neither did a rumored recent competitive swimmer only barely qualified to swim Masters yet apparently talented enough for Brad to say Doug will have to work to keep up with him. I was more disappointed, however, that the faster lanes seem to be becoming a men’s only club as Darcy, Kyra and Jodi, three of our best female swimmers, weren’t there. And as Jodi was married over the summer the betting line is overwhelming in favor of Hyack Masters not seeing her again. That’s a shame as there is nothing on this earth that provides the same incentive for hard work than having my ass kicked by some twenty something woman (actually having a fourteen year old girl do the ass-kicking would provide even more incentive but I think perhaps my fragile male ego would suffer a little too much). But the real subject of this post comes from the after practice hot tub soak where Ian talked about his son’s rapid improvement the last month of his summer swimming league. Turner saw his 100 back time drop seven seconds to place 2nd at the end-of-summer Provincial Championships; took ten seconds off his 200 IM for a 3rd; 1½ seconds from his 50 free for another 3rd; and finished the Provincials in style by taking the gold in the 100 free by swimming a full four seconds faster – every one improving on times he was swimming less than one month earlier. As a thirteen year old weighing in at 112 lbs. Ian’s absolutely right in pointing out he’s not winning races because he’s bigger than the rest. He’s winning because of improved technique and a better feel for the water, plus of course a generous portion of intestinal fortitude; the three of which makes for a winning combination in swimming. A big assist obviously comes from inheriting some of his father’s natural talent. Ian’s now moaning next summer he can only count on bettering Turner in fly and even in that, his favorite stroke, he wonders for how long. A good lesson to us all on the importance of technique and body position to swimming fast times and what we should be emphasizing in practice. Turner will be joining our team later on in the year after hockey season winds down to carry out his allowable winter conditioning. Hopefully somebody will step up such as Doug so we don’t have to ask Turner to lead Lane Six, our fastest lane. There would be something fundamentally wrong with a Masters swim team having a fourteen year old as its best swimmer wouldn’t you agree?