AQUATIC NOTEBOOK, Issue 46: SOFLO’s Dara Torres Fractures Toe

AQUATIC NOTEBOOK, Issue 46: SOFLO’s Dara Torres Fractures Toe

July 13, 2011


Five-time Olympian Dara Torres is nursing a fractured toe today.

The ageless swimmer underwent x-rays on Wednesday afternoon to determine the extent of a toe injury suffered in her Parkland home on Tuesday night.

She alerted her 112,728 followers on Twitter moments after it happened.

“Cracked toe on corner of wall, good thing is at least it took 10 seconds for pain to set in, now I’m dying, and there’s nothing one can do,” Torres tweeted. “Toe definitely hurts. I think feet/toes aren’t the prettiest thing on a person, but mine is pretty ugly right now.”

Torres, 44, is no stranger to injuries. Since the end of 2008, she has had thumb surgery, three knee operations and shoulder procedure and surgery. She’s had more than 15 orthopedic surgeries.

Her SOFLO coach Bruno Darzi said Wednesday night Torres is “day by day now, we will see.”

Adding insult to injury, on her way back from her doctor’s office Torres got caught in a speed trap and got a speeding ticket.

Brazilians Will Learn Fate On July 20

The fate of four Brazilian swimmers including Olympic and world champion Cesar Cielo, will be determined on July 20 before the swimming competition begins at the 14th FINA World Aquatic

Championships in Shanghai, China.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) have expedited the hearing following the positive drug tests for Furosemide or Lasix, which is on the banned list as a drug-masking agent.

FINA, the sport’s international governing body, challenged the warning given to the four by the Brazilian Aquatic Confederation which led to the intervention by CAS.

The other swimmers are Nicholas dos Santos, Henrique Ribeiro Marques Barbosa amd Vinicus Waked.

Food Controversy At World Championships

With only two days until the opening ceremony of the World Aquatic Championships, there is already a controversy.

Worries of contaminated meat have been raised by several participating countries and it may actually have some validity.

In a study done by the World Anti-Doping Agency-accredited lab in Germany, officials found that 22 of 28 travelers, including several athletes, returning from China tested positive for low levels of clenbuterol, a chemical strongly linked to cows and pigs raised in China and at the center of a tainting scandal earlier this year.

The caveat is that clenbuterol is on WADA’s list of banned substances as an anabolic agent that builds muscle and burns fat. Swimmers who test positive could be banned up to two years and be out of the 2012 London Olympic Games.

The U.S. and Australian teams have already imported meat and other food products for their teams. Other teams have chose not to.

Oprah Learning To Swim

Television mogul Oprah Winfrey, now that she has some free time on her hands, is learning how to swim at age 57.

“Started out the week taking swimming lessons,” Winfrey emailed her fans. “Moving beyond my amateur doggy paddle. Learned the breaststroke today.”

The former talk show host admitted she has been afraid of the water for years.

“This I’ve known forever is the great metaphor of life,” Winfrey said. “Move with the flow. Don’t fight the current. Resist nothing. Let life carry on. Don’t try to carry it. Sometimes we just have to be reminded. A swim lesson did it for me.”

She plans on continuing her swim lessons while serving as CEO of the OWN cable channel.

“Over a year ago I pulled a picture from O magazine of a woman gliding through water,” Winfrey said. “It was such a striking image of freedom and possibility that I put it on my vision board. Today when I finished my swimming lesson I passed the vision board lying on the table where it’s been since 2009. I had an ‘Aha’ moment. I had just become that woman, gliding through the water.”

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Defending Champion SOFLO Heads Field For FGC Long Course Junior Olympics At Plantation

Defending Champion SOFLO Heads Field For FGC Long Course Junior Olympics At Plantation

July 13, 2011


South Florida Aquatic Club returns as defending champion when the Florida Gold Coast 14&Under Long Course Junior Olympics begin Friday at the Plantation Central Park Aquatic Complex.

A year ago, SOFLO, only two months old, made history in the Florida Gold Coast as the youngest club ever to win a major FGC title.

The Nike-sponsored club dethroned the Lake Lytal Lightning and swept the combined, boys and team titles and posted more than 200 career-best times.

A year later, SOFLO swimmers are even more experienced and poised to defend their titles in the most prestigious long course event of the season for 14-and-unders.

Eight of the ten swimmers selected for the July 26-31 Southern Age Group Championships in Cary, N.C. are among the field of more than 700 swimmers for the three-day meet. They are Tristan Celestin, Juan Lucas, Alfredo Mesa Jr., Julien Pinon, Cristian Rossi, Catharine Cooper, Allison Kopas and Jessica Rodriguez.

Two SOFLO swimmers will make their final JO appearance as 14-year-olds.

U.S. Olympic trials qualifier Emily Kopas, 14, is seeded in four 13-14 events. Kopas is No. 1 seed in the 100-meter breaststroke, 1:12.70; 200-meter breaststroke in 2:33.84; 200-meter individual medley, 2:26.04; and 50-meter breaststroke in 34.69.

Marinheiro, 14, is the top seed in the 13-14 400-meter freestyle in 4:36.90.

Other SOFLO top-seeded swimmers and their events are:

Juan Lucas, 12, 11-12 200-meter backstroke, 2:28.09; 100-meter backstroke, 1:11.10; and 50-meter backstroke in 32.54.

Julien Pinon, 12, 11-12 50-meter freestyle, 26.52; 100-meter butterfly, 1:04.74; 400-meter freestyle, 4:28.63; 200-meter freestyle, 2:04.14; 50-meter butterfly, 29.36; and 100-meter freestyle 57.28.

Allison Kopas, 12, 11-12 50-meter butterfly, 31.73 and 50-meter breaststroke, 37.46.

Sam Quintero, 10, 10-and-under 100-meter butterfly, 1:20.21; 400-meter freestyle, 5:18.63; 200-meter freestyle, 2:32.47; and 200-meter individual medley, 2:51.14.

Tristan Celestin, 12, 11-12, 200-meter breaststroke, 2:50.43; and 50-meter breaststroke, 33.85.

Alfredo Mesa Jr., 12, 11-12, 400-meter individual medley, 5:38.74.

Jessica Rodriguez, 12, 11-12 400-meter freestyle, 4:49.86; 200-meter breaststroke, 3:01.48; and 400-meter individual medley, 5:33.62. 

Last year, the Kopas sisters were unable to score points since they were competing unattached in compliance with the mandatory Florida Gold Coast transfer rule.

The meet is open to Florida Gold Coast swimmers who earned qualifying times during the season including this past weekend’s Area 2 and 3 Developmental Meets and last chance qualifiers in North Miami and Davie.

Thirty-two teams are entered including  Davie Nadadores, Fort Lauderdale Aquatics, Lake Lytal Lightning, Metro Aquatic Club of Miami and Pine Crest Swimming.

South Florida Aquatic Club has the largest team with 90 swimmers (50 girls and 40 boys). Fort Lauderdale Aquatics is the second largest with 68 and Metro Aquatic Club of Miami third largest with 61.

Each competition morning is divided into three sessions—girls, boys and distance.

Because of the large field, “chase starts” will be used to save time. It’s a procedure where both ends of the pool will be used for starting events.

Next week, senior swimmers, 15-and-over, will compete in the July 22-25 FGC Senior Championships at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.


What: Florida Gold Coast 14&Under Junior Olympics Long Course Championships

When: Friday-Sunday, prelims 8:30 a.m., finals 5 p.m.

Where: Plantation Central Park Aquatic Complex, 9151 NW 2nd St., Plantation.

Admission: $3 adults per session, $3 heat sheets per session. For information call 954-452-2526.

Sharon Robb can be reached at