Getting ready

Kidd using Western Slope Championships to prepare for state swim meet

Delaney Kidd is all smiles Friday at the Western Slope Championships at El Pomar Natatorium. Kidd, a Mavericks Aquatics swimmer, is using the meet to improve her times for next week’s state swim meet.

Maverick Aquatics swimmer Jordyn Beem takes a breath Friday during the breaststroke portion of the 400-yard individual medley race at the Western Slope Championships at El Pomar Natatorium.

When Delaney Kidd’s white Maverick Aquatics swim cap pops out of the water in the El Pomar Natatorium, there’s a smile on her face.

In fact, Kidd spent most of the first day of the 2014 Western Slope Championships smiling Friday, and it wouldn’t come as a surprise if she wore that same grin while under the water, too.

Kidd has reason to be so happy. The 12-year-old will compete in her first state swim meet next week in Fort Collins.

Kidd said she isn’t nervous about the meet. Just the opposite — she’s just excited for the opportunity.

Kidd is using the Western Slope Championships to improve her times and make state cuts.

Almost as soon as Kidd gets out of the water, she is greeted by her older sister, Taylor. Like Delaney, Taylor is all smiles as she gives her younger sister a massive bear hug.

She doesn’t even seem to mind, or notice, that Delaney, who is dripping wet, has just gotten Taylor’s tie-dyed sweatshirt completely soaked.

The sisters have a close relationship, and Delaney said Taylor is the reason she swims.

“She has always swam, which is something that makes me want to swim more,” Delaney said. “Plus, when she was at practice every day, I had to come with her.”

Like most big sisters, Taylor is always offering advice to help Delaney. In fact, their encounter after Delaney’s 400-yard freestyle race wasn’t just a congratulatory hug, it was also a conversation about how Delaney can improve.

Delaney, a Redlands Middle School student, has no problem with Taylor giving her advice.

She knows how helpful her sister’s experience is to her progress. Her main focus at the moment is moving up a level, so any advice that can help her in achieving that goal is welcome, whether from her sister, or her other friends on the team.

“I got out and she just told me all of these things that I needed to fix, which is probably what makes me go faster now,” Delaney said. “She told me to keep my head still so that I wasn’t moving around, and to breathe on both sides.”


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