By Вen Li
Becoming extra crispy–but not necessarily tasty–on the beaches of Rio wasn’t his goal last weekend, but Dinos swimmer Rick Say did it anyway. In addition to what turned out to be a tan, he also brought home three gold medals along with a Canadian record for the 200m freestyle event.
"It was my first win at a World Cup meet," said the third-year
Education hopeful. "The 200 was the only Canadian short course record I didn’t have. It was pretty solid for me."
Dinos Head Coach Mike Blondal agreed.
"I thought that he swam very well at a world level and consolidated
his times in preparation for the Worlds in July/August 2002. It’s early in the season, and he and the team performed at a high world standard."
Both Say and Blondal attribute Say’s and the team’s performance to increased training earlier this year in preparation for the meet in Rio. In particular, Say attributed his success to solid distance training.
"I think it’s important to have good partners to train with," said Say. "We’re all excited about the World Cup meet in Edmonton this weekend and hope to win a few more medals."
While the Commonwealth trials in Winnipeg are still four months away, these early victories may be signs of good things to come for the team.
"Their performance in Rio was very good for the varsity athletes," said Bondal. "They’re just preparing to swim fast in Edmonton and get the best times as often as we can."
While Edmonton offers the team another chance at the speed records, money may also be a motivator. In addition to the gold in the 200m, 400m and 1,500m freestyle events, Say also won $3,000 for his efforts in Brazil.
"I don’t swim for the money, I swim to swim. But coming home with a few extra bucks is not something to complain about," he said.