A Grafton High School swimmer is part of just .05 percent of athletes in the nation.
Kyleigh Tankard qualified to try out for the United States Olympic Swim Team, traveling to Omaha to compete. The 17-year-old rising senior competed in the 100-meter Butterfly and the 200-meter Butterfly last weekend.
She made it to the B finals in 200 Butterfly placing 13th of more than 30 swimmers.
For the 100 Butterfly in the A finals, she placed eighth beating about 30 swimmers.
While only the top two swimmers go on to compete in the Olympics, for Tankard the experience was still exciting. For example, in the lead up to the finals, swimmers walked out of a tunnel and each were introduced.
During the start of her event, the pool area was silent, something she was not used to because in other meets, there is always chatter. “That was a bit nerve racking,” she said.
Another experience was being able to meet her coaches for the college she plans to attend in 2022, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.
Her family has history with the school, with both her parents, her grandmother and aunt having graduated from there. “It has always been a dream of mine to go there,” she said.
She plans to study either pharmacy or bio-medical engineering. Other future plans are to try out for the Olympics again.
“I think next time, since I have been, I will be a less nervous,” she noted.
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