CORAL SPRINGS—For Biggi Lohberg, it was the last chance to swim best times in the 2010 short course season.

Competing in the Coral Springs Short Course Yards Last Chance To Zip It Up Masters meet Saturday at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, the 1988 Olympian swam best times in the 50-yard freestyle and 200-yard butterfly.

Lohberg, 44, competing for Gold Coast Masters, won the 50-yard freestyle in 25.34 seconds, the 100-yard freestyle in 55.30 and 50-yard butterfly in 27.10. She edged Michele Huyette, 41, of FINS by 1/100ths of a second to win the 50 freestyle.

Lohberg was also a member of the winning 200-yard freestyle and 200-yard medley relays.

But the most satisfying race was the 200-yard butterfly that she swam during the 200-yard freestyle race since there was no 200 butterfly event.

While it won’t count in any record book or official result, Lohberg walked away personally satisfied after swimming a best time of 2:08.28.

“I guess I looked a little odd swimming butterfly when everyone else is swimming freestyle,” Lohberg said. “I swam the 200 butterfly in St. Petersburg in 2:11 and it felt real easy. I thought I could go faster. I didn’t go to short course nationals so I wanted to swim it here. I know it won’t count but I wanted to see what I could do.”

For Lohberg, it was also the last chance to squeeze into her high-tech Blue Seventy swimsuit.

The one-day masters meet was the final opportunity to wear the neck-to-ankle suits, which revolutionized the sport but are now banned by all the major governing bodies. Masters was the last group to outlaw the suits, allowing them to be worn through the end of May.

Not surprisingly, 103 individual and 19 relay records were set at the same pool used for the 1996 Olympics during the U.S. Masters Short Course Nationals held in Atlanta last week.

FINA, the sport’s international governing body, passed stringent new limits on how much skin could be covered and what fabrics could be used. The federation was concerned the bodysuits made entirely of polyurethane materials were ruining the sport.

“The suit helps me in the fly,” Lohberg said. “It feels good in the water.

“There are different opinions out there about the suit,” Lohberg said. “I think we should be even with everybody else, just to make it more competitive. I think a lot of people swam faster at masters meets in the suit.”

Most swimmers including two-time Olympian Vlad Polyakov of SOFLO have embraced the end of the swimsuit wars which ended with an amazing 43 world records being set at the 2009 World Championships in Rome.

Because of work and family commitments, Lohberg has never been able to train for a full long course masters season and isn’t sure how many meets she will compete in the rest of the year.

With the summer coming up, she plans to be busy in her role as the SwimAmerica Program Director for SOFLO at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.

“I don’t know if I will compete in the summer,” Lohberg said. “We have SwimAmerica in the mornings and afternoons. We work hard in the summer months.”

Lohberg, a wife and mother of two, remains fit and competitive at a high level. She trains three days a week and still has a passion for the sport.

“I just love it,” Lohberg said. “I only swim three times a week but I still love to race and compete. I would like to stay with swimming if time allows it. It is a lot of fun. I have a great group I train and travel together with. I love being fit. I am not happy with myself when I am not fit.

“This season I changed my weight program and did free weights and it seemed to work well for the short distances and even the 200 butterfly. I am turning more into a sprinter. It’s more fun and less practice.

“If I knew then what I know now I would have been a little better when I was training for the Olympics,” said Lohberg, a national champion and record holder for Germany, who competed at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. “The training would have been different. I would have been smarter competing. But you have to keep everything in perspective.”

June will be a busy month for masters swimmers. Three events are scheduled.

On June 6, the U.S. Masters 5K (5,000 meters) or 10K (10,000 meters) Postal Event will be hosted by the Deerfield Beach masters at the Deerfield Beach Middle School Athletic Complex, 501 S.E. 6th Avenue.

The Upper Keys Summer Invitational is June 4-6 at Founders Park Pool in Islamorada.

The June Krauser Summer Splash long course meters meet is June 18-20 at the Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Complex.


Keegan Boisson-Yates of the South Florida Aquatic Club continued his racing tune-up Saturday at the FLA Senior Circuit meet at the Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Complex.

The 14-year-old Taravella student from Trinidad and Tobago competing in his first long course meet of the season, placed sixth in the 100-meter backstroke in 1:05.28, an SUSE cut time.

Boisson-Yates was the youngest finisher among the Top 10 swimmers. His splits were 31.79 and 33.49.

Swimming in back-to-back events, Boisson-Yates followed with a 16th-place finish in the 200-meter individual medley in 2:27.22.

Boisson-Yates is working on race strategy in preparation for the June 26-July 2 CISC (Caribbean Island Swimming Championships) Meet in Havana, Cuba, where he has qualifying times in five events.

The Memorial Day Weekend ends on Sunday at 10 a.m. with timed finals. Boisson-Yates is scheduled to compete in the 100 freestyle and 200 backstroke.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com






The South Florida Aquatic Club kicks off the summer long course season in grand style this weekend in South Florida.

SOFLO will have split squads competing at two meets in Pompano Beach and Boca Raton.

SOFLO will have one lineup of 31 swimmers (16 female and 15 male) compete in the FLA Open Invitational Friday through Sunday at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.

SOFLO will have another lineup of 60 swimmers (37 female and 23 male) in the North Palm Beach Long Course Summer Kickoff Saturday and Sunday at the Pompano Beach Municipal Pool.

Heading SOFLO’s contingent for the FLA Open Invitational will be Canadian Olympic hopeful Caroline Kuczynski.

The 19-year-old member of the Canadian junior national team is home for the summer after her freshman year at Arizona State University where she is majoring in psychology.

At ASU, Kuczynski competed in the 200 and 500 freestyles and 100 and 200 butterfly events. She swam season-bests at the Pac-10 Championships in the 500 freestyle (4:51.44) and 100 butterfly (53.71).

Joining Kuczynski on the 16-member girls’ team are Jacqueline Alexander, 15; Emily Briano, 13; Nicole Cacurak, 14; Linea Cutter, 16; Kirsten Garza, 15; Catalina Gonella, 13; Sofia Gonella, 18; Brittany Hanson, 15; Kristina Nork, 15; Natasha Payamps, 14; Kimberly Sauer, 15; Nicole Schein, 17; Hana Suessenguth, 15; Carina Tenaglia, 15; and Domenica Vera, 14.

Graduating seniors Justin Grigull, 18, and Michael Minichiello, 18, lead the boys’ team that also includes Brian Arnaud, 16; Matthew Bellew, 25; Cosmin Cioanta, 16; Joshua Cutter, 14; Kyle Desrosiers, 14; Mauricio Hidalgo, 16; Tomas Kloosterman, 14; Derek Maguire, 16; Joshua Moscovitch, 14; Benjamin Neubauer, 17; Nicholas Nocera, 16; Charles Santamaria, 13; and Matias Sisnandez, 15.

The times and sessions for the FAU meet are Friday, 4 p.m.; Saturday 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 and Sunday 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. All sessions are timed finals.

Keegan Boisson-Yates, 15, and Tyla Martin, 12, recently selected to represent Trinidad and Tobago at the June 26-July 2 CISC Championships in Havana, Cuba will head SOFLO’s squad at the North Palm Beach Summer Kickoff meet Saturday and Sunday in Pompano Beach.

Martin will be joined on the 37-member girls’ team, ages 13 and under, by Jaidyn Baker, 12; Melanie Berland, 11; Delaney Biro, 8; DeMia Bonner, 11; Zoe Bonner, 8; Stephanie Campo, 12; Eden Cooke, 10; Catharine Cooper, 10; Jenna Deal, 12; Charlene Forti, 11; Danielle Ginzburg, 12; Daniela Gomez, 10; Kylie Herman, 12; Ronni Isenberg, 11; Amanda Jaffe, 8; Lindsey Kaufman, 11; Kelly Kealty, 12; Audrey Mason, 12; Julie Mason, 9; Lauren Noyola, 9; Isabella Pittinger, 10; Kristin Sauer, 11; Lindsey Sauer, 13; Megan Schimansky, 10; Sarah Schimansky, 7; Lilian Skopp, 11; Lauren Smith, 11; Lydia Szakacs, 8; Kristen Tabia, 11; Ashley Tan, 9; Camila Vara, 11; Hannah Virgin, 9; Allyson Walters, 11; Marissa Walters, 12; Rebecca Wilkerson, 12; and Haley Wright, 12.

Joining Boisson-Yates, the oldest member of the boys team, are Dewey Carpenter, 12; August Charni, 13; Augusto Cohn, 9; Pedro Cunha, 13; Riley Frost, 9; Guilherme Hada, 10; Luiz Hosfeld, 12; Boris Iliev, 9; David Isenberg, 11; Harrison Jaffe, 8; Sebastien Parks, 11; Parth Patel, 13; Daniel Perkowski, 11; Bryce Pierce, 13; Gian Saviano, 9; Charles Schwab, 13; Brett Sevigny, 13; Manuel Sisnandez, 10; Aron Tacher, 12; Gannen Tages, 9; Arie Van Der Vlist, 11; and Sebastian Vargas, 11.

The times and sessions at the Pompano Beach pool located at 820 NE 18th Ave. are 9 a.m. open and 1:30 p.m. for 12-and-unders on Saturday and Sunday. All sessions are timed finals.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com