To learn more about qualifying for the CanAM Meet/ Pan-Pac Para Championship Trials, read more from Paralympian Tom Miazga.
Athletes from all around the world gathered in Miami, FL today for Day One of competition for the 2014 U.S. Paralympics Spring Swimming National Championships/Spring CanAm competition. Bringing in more than 200 athletes from the U.S, Canada, Cameroon, Columbia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Mexico, and Russia the Ransom Everglades Aquatic Center has become the epicenter for Paralympic Swimming this weekend. The competition will serve as the selection meet for the U.S team roster for Para Pan Pacific Championships to be held in Pasadena, CA in August.
Michelle Konkoly, a student at Georgetown University made her debut at her third ever Paralympic competition in true fashion breaking the S9 100m Freestyle American record with a time of 1:03.94 which also ranks her number one in the world this year.
Konkoly, who sustained a spinal cord injury after a tragic fall from a fifth story window her freshman year at Georgetown on January 11, 2011, returned to training just eight months after her injury. A collegiate swimmer prior to her injury, she found her way back to the pool continuing her career as a collegiate athlete competing for the Hoyas.
In October of 2011, Mallory Weggemann spoke at Georgetown University on behalf of Deloitte and met several of Michelle’s teammates following her speech, who shared Konkoly’s story with Weggemann. Although, Michelle and her mother had previously stumbled upon information regarding the Paralympics on the Internet, that day has served as a reminder to the both of them of the importance of sharing the incredible opportunities that are available to individuals with disabilities.
Konkoly made her debut into the Paralympic world at the Paralympic Trials for the London 2012 Games. After not being named to the London 2012 team, she continued to compete as a collegiate athlete at Georgetown and in February 2014, she set her first American Record in 100m Freestyle. She is certainly a force to be reckoned with in the S9 class and one to keep on eye on for the remainder of the year as she looks to make her first international roster for Team USA.
Also other notable athletes from day one include Lt. Brad Snyder who is a two-time London 2012 Paralympic Gold medalist and making his return to competition for the first time since the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Snyder competed in the 100m Freestyle clocking a time of 1:00.02.
Jessica Long, 12 time Paralympic Gold medalist who just returned from the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Games a few weeks ago where she was an on camera commentator for NBC Olympics swam the 100m Freestyle in a time of 1:07.65 putting her second in the world rankings for this year. Long will be racing the 200m Individual Medley, 100m Backstroke, and the 400m Freestyle as well this weekend.
Overall, Day One was a great start to what is sure to be a weekend full of fast swimming in Miami.
Thank you to Jeremy Snyder from The Factory Agency for contributing the above information.
The Canadian swimmers got off to a record-breaking start in Miami as well. Danial Murphy highlighted the day, breaking several national S5 records. Murphy posted a best time of 1:28.29 in the 100m freestyle and 49.31 in the 50m butterfly. An interview with Danial can be viewed at the top of the page.
“It’s pretty amazing to see what the results are of my swimming and to see how far I’ve come in the last little bit,” Murphy said. “I think the first day has been amazing, to see all the other swimmers and to see how far Canada has come and how great everybody is doing.”