Georgetown swimmer competes at junior nationals
All focus and determination, 18-year-old Beau Fusilier pressed down his goggles once more, and stepped onto the diving block.
“It’s just like any other race,” he thought to himself. “Swim fast and give it your all.”
“Swimmers, take your mark!” commanded the starter at Junior Nationals.
Beau leaned into dive position and prepared for the—
With that, he sprang off the block, using an efficient flutter kick to gain momentum underwater.
The next few minutes were a blur for Beau as he raced himself, the clock, and the competition on either side of him in the 400 Individual Medley: 100 meters butterfly, 100 meters backstroke, 100 meters breaststroke, and, finally, 100 meters freestyle.
“Your body hurts, but you push through the pain,” says Beau, who’s accustomed to pushing himself to higher levels, both in the pool and on land.
During the last 50 meters of the race, he caught sight of another swimmer slightly edging him out and kicked into higher gear, swimming even faster and more efficiently.
“Competition has always fueled me,” Beau explains. “When I was younger, my brother [who’s three and a half years older] was much faster than me, and I’d always try to one-up him,” he says, laughing at himself good-naturedly.
The extra throttle served Beau well at Junior Nationals. He dropped time in all five of his races, placed first in his heat in the 400 IM, and placed 26th over all in that event.
“Swimming in Junior Nationals has been on my bucket list since I was 13 or 14,” says Beau, who prepared for the meet by swimming nine times a week—or about 20 hours per week—for four months, without reprieve. “It was a big meet and really fast. You have to meet the qualifying times, and only about 100 swimmers nationwide competed in each event.”
Now that Beau has checked swimming in Junior Nationals off his list, his next stop is qualifying for Olympic Trials in the summer of 2016. It’ll be a challenge, but Beau and his coaches agree that swimming at Trials is well within his reach.
“It’s funny,” says Beau. “When I first started swimming competitively [at age seven], I didn’t actually enjoy it that much. I didn’t like deep water, and I didn’t open my eyes under water. You know the doggie paddle or Tarzan? That was me when I first started. . . . Actually, if I hadn’t had three older siblings who were already on the [Aquadillos swim] team, the coaches probably would have kicked me off, because I was having trouble making it across the length of the pool.”
Today, he’s swimming fast and taking names.
Congratulations, Beau. We look forward to seeing you at Olympic Trials.
For more information on youth age-group swimming in Georgetown, visit the Texas Gold Swimming website.