Swimmer Sidrell Williams determined to make Olympic qualifying standard
World Youth Championship representative Sidrell Williams highlighted last weekend's WATA/Walter Rogers Age Group Swimming championships, with Pan American (Pan Am) B qualifying times in three freestyle events.
Despite Williams' successes, the former St George's College and Wolmer's Boys' student, who is in his second year at St Andrews High in California, is far from satisfied with his latest accomplishments and says making the Olympic A qualifying time is his ultimate goal.
"The Olympic cut is my personal goal, and that has always been my goal since I was five years old when I started, and I don't intend to give up on it.
"I am trying to keep positive and work harder, but personally and mentally, I want more. I want lower times, so this is a B (Pan Am qualifying) cut and I want to make the A cut. If I'm selected, so be it, but if not, I'll work harder, although I am going to work hard any way. But my goal is to keep going at it and to work harder to make it happen," he said.
At the five-day meet held at the National Stadium pool, the 18-year-old swimmer - competing in the 15 and over category - went under the Pan Am B qualifying mark in the 50m, 100m, and 200m and set a record in the 50m butterfly. He also won the 200m butterfly.
In the 50m freestyle, Williams stopped the clock at 24.03 in the heat to beat the required mark of 24.07. In the 100m freestyle, he went below the stipulated standard of 53:67 twice, first registering 52.79 and then 52.90 in the final.
Although he did not compete in the 200m freestyle final, Williams bettered the Pan Am qualifying B mark of 1.58.18 in the heat with a time of 1.58.14. He also re-established a record in the 50m butterfly, posting 26.07.
"I expected good times, so I am happy," Williams said.
"But I can never be satisfied as I always want more. I am grateful because you never know what to expect and anything can happen. So I am very grateful but looking forward to doing better times," he said.
Williams, who competed locally for the first time since 2013, was also impressed with the local swimmers.
"I must commend the young ones and everyone else. It's really good to be back home and see everyone swimming so well. I didn't reach this far by myself, but I am glad to be back home and see everyone swimming."
Tornadoes blew away the competition and secured the championship with 1827 points. The Y Speedos finished second, with 1625.50 points, Swimaz Aquatic Swim Club finished third with 733.50, Marlin were fourth with 644, and Blue Seal Swim Club fifth with 588.