When we gave Regan Smith our 10 & under NAG Swimmer of the Year Swammy Award in 2012, she was relatively unknown nationally. Early in 2013, however, Smith is making an incredible push to repeat with that honor after breaking 4 National Age Group Records over the weekend at the University of St. Thomas.
Smith, who trains at the South Metro Storm Swim Club is co-head coached by twin brothers Phil and Chuck Smith (no relationship to Regan), as well as Jim Andersen. The staff has brought her along slowly, still training her with swimmers of a similar age, meaning that she still has a lot of room for growth. She’s by no means small for a 10-year old, but she’s not huge either like we see from a lot of kids who dominate at this age group. One opposing coach who was on deck said that “her walls are good, but like a good kid of that age. She doesn’t have a lot of jump strength yet like you would think from someone with her times, which makes her so much more impressive. She’s obviously been really well-coached and has a lot of talent.”
The biggest headline-grabbing swim is the 100 backstroke, where her 59.89 makes her the first 10 & under girl to break a minute in the 100 back (after we saw Destin Lasco become the first boy to do it just last year). That takes down the oldest 10 & under NAG Record on the books, a 1:01.71 by Beth Botsford from 1992. We’ve seen this a lot in the last year, swimmers taking really old records and absolutely crushing them. That’s really an impressive swim, splitting 29.01 – 30.88.
She also broke the 50 backstroke record, held by two-time defending NCAA backstroke champion Cindy Tran, with a 27.79 (.02 under the old record). Showing great versatility outside of the backstrokes, she swam a 26.91 in the 50 fly, and a 59.80 in the 100 fly, to take down the 27.27 and 59.82, respectively, set by Ella Eastin in 2007. Eastin is one of the most impressive 10 & under swimmers of the new millenium: even with these two broken, she still holds 6 all-time marks in the age group.
Smith ages up to the 11-12 age group in early February, and will immediately become a contender in that group too. She would rank in the top 12 in the 100 back this season.
In 8 individual swims on the weekend, Smith broke 4 National Age Group Records and 8 Minnesota Age Group Records. This is in a state that in the last 10-or-so-years has seen a lot of really impressive age group swimmers, like Rachel Bootsma, to have taken down several NAG Records.
Smith’s full list of results from the weekend:
50 back – 27.79 NAG Record
100 back – 59.89 NAG Record
50 fly – 26.91 NAG Record
100 fly – 59.80 NAG Record
50 free – 25.79 Minnesota Record
100 free – 56.01 Minnesota Record
200 IM – 2:17.27 Minnesota Record
200 free – 2:04.54 Minnesota Record