Long Course state meet ‘eye-opening’ for youngsters

In 2008, at 12 years old, Missy Franklin broke the girls 11-12 Colorado Swimming Inc. (CSI) state record in the 200-meter long course individual medley.

And although very few swimmers at any age can compare to Franklin, the competition at the 2013 Colorado Long Course State Championships was something not many young swimmers in Grand Junction had seen.

“For the 12 and unders it was eye-opening,” Maverick Aquatics coach Ed Stehlin said. “It’s a great experience for them.”

Stehlin estimated just under 1,000 swimmers were split between El Pomar Natatorium and Lincoln Park’s Moyer Pool on Friday on the first day of the meet.

Many of them are looking to set records at El Pomar, where numerous records were shattered at the Class 5A boys high school state championships this spring.

Stehlin said that an early morning start, before uncomfortably high temperatures, and a familiarity among Front Range swimmers with outdoor pools could lead to more records being toppled.

“(Moyer) pool, even being old, it’s still a good, fast pool,” Stehlin said. “It’s still fairly fast. I think that went well and I don’t think it affected many swimmers too much.”

The Long Course meet is one of the first major meets hosted in Grand Junction that has utilized more than El Pomar Natatorium and one of the largest meets using the entire 50-meter length of the pool.

High school and college events, the majority of what is hosted in El Pomar, use a 25-yard track.

Grand Junction High School and Maverick Aquatics swimmer Taylor Kidd will swim in the 100 freestyle today at Moyer Pool.

Kidd is one of a handful of older Grand Junction swimmers competing in the meet.

Preliminaries begin at
8:30 a.m. at El Pomar Natatorium and Moyer Pool. Finals begin at 5 p.m. at El Pomar.

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