WATCH: Lydia Jacoby Accept Golden Goggles Awards for Breakout Performer (VIDEO)

Presented by Donna de Varona and Ato Bolden, the Breakout Performer of the Year Award at the 2021 Golden Goggle Awards went to 17-year-old Seward, Alaska native Lydia Jacoby.

Other nominees included Bobby Finke, the gold medalist in the men’s 800 and 1500 freestyles, 15-year-old Katie Grimes, who finished 4th in the women’s 800 freestyle, and 400 IM Olympic silver medalist Emma Weyant.

Jacoby won the women’s 100 breaststroke at the Tokyo Olympic Games in 1:04.95, out-touching 2016 Olympic Champion and World Record holder Lilly King, who placed 3rd in 1:05.54, as well as South Africa’s Tatjana Schoenmaker who took silver in 1:05.22, and who would go on to win the women’s 200 breaststroke in World Record fashion.

One of the Tokyo Games’ most viral moments came from Jacoby’s hometown of Seward, Alaska which celebrated her victory in the 100 breaststroke with rapturous applause.

Jacoby begins her acceptance speech by thanking the other members of the Olympic team, including the coaches and staff who “helped me along the way after Trials, I think they contributed drastically to my confidence, and it was so motivating being with everyone for those weeks leading into the Olympics.”

Jacoby goes on to describe the Olympic team as a “big family” with no generational divides, expressing comfort in speaking with both older and younger members of the team. She then says, “Yeah, I just realized I called you old!” (For reference, 31-year-old Allison Schmitt was the oldest member of the United States Olympic swimming team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.)

Jacoby finishes her speech by saying “You guys mean so much to me, and I couldn’t have done it without you.”

Jacoby’s hometown of Seward, Alaska celebrated her finish in the 100 breaststroke with rapturous applause.

See the rest of the 2021 Golden Goggles Speeches Below

Perseverance Award – Annie Lazor

Female Athlete of the Year – Katie Ledecky

Male Athlete of the Year – Caeleb Dressel

Relay Performance of the Year – Men’s 4 x 100 Medley Relay, Tokyo Olympic Games

Female Race of the Year – Lydia Jacoby, Women’s 100 Breaststroke, Tokyo Olympic Games

Male Race of the Year – Bobby Finke, Men’s 800 Freestyle, Tokyo Olympic Games

Coach of the Year – Gregg Troy

Impact Award – Bob Vincent & Cecil Gordon

Tribute to Mike Unger

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About Reid Carlson

Reid Carlson

Reid Carlson originally hails from Clay Center, Kansas, where he began swimming at age six.  At age 14 he began swimming club year-round and later with his high school team, making state all four years.  He was fortunate enough to draw the attention of Kalamazoo College where he went on to …

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