Most people only know swimming by the name of one competitor, Michael Phelps. Phelps is indeed one of the most accomplished Olympic athletes of all time, but there is so much people do not know about the sport of swimming.
For competitive swimmers, making a United States Olympic Trial cut is the ultimate career goal. You see the focus, emotional responses, letdowns, and kids training like they’ve never trained before just to attend this once in a life time opportunity. As a matter of fact, I broke down in a hysterical cry the very moment I saw that my time had made the cut. Swimmers fit in as many competitions into their schedule as they can to get the opportunity to attend. Weekend after weekend swimmers are racing at local pools to cross country events for that chance. There are 12 year olds getting their Olympic Trial cuts to men and women over 40 still trying for that career goal. NCAA athletes, NAIA athletes, sponsored swimmers, post grad and younger teens all have the same opportunity to represent the USA in London.
The 2012 Olympic Trials for swimming will be held in Omaha, Nebraska from June 25th to July 2nd. The selection process for the Olympic team relies on the present performance, no matter your previous ranking within the world. There are 26 spots for women and 26 spots for men on the team. For individual events, each event originally begins with its own group of heats, which consists of every swimmer that has received a cut from 2009 until the present date. From the heats results, the top 16 finishers proceed to the semi-finals. Yet the true contest is in the final. The fastest 8 finishers move on from the semi-finals to the finals where the first and second finishers land a spot on the Olympic team for that event.
Some people will spend as much as $1,000 for a front row seat to “the show” as some call it. The Olympic Trials are an opportunity for great competition and spectating as well as for those who one day dream to compete.