By Sharon Robb
PEMBROKE PINES, October 5, 2018—In a thrilling finish, Rafael Rodriguez of South Florida Aquatic Club won a gutsy 1,000-yard freestyle race Friday night in the TYR Friday Distance Challenge at Academic Village Pool.
Rodriguez, 16, outsprinted Maxwell Miller of YMCA of South Florida and Cameron Taddonio of Boca Raton Swim Team to win in 9 minutes, 48.23 seconds.
Miller, 18, was second in a best time 9 minutes and 48.54 seconds. Florida State-bound Taddonio, 18, was third in 9 minutes and 48.63 seconds, also a best time.
Miller dropped 5.92 off his previous best and Taddonio dropped 42.13 off his entry time of 10:30.76.
The trio were the only swimmers to dip under 10 minutes. It was one of the closest finishes in a boys’ distance race in Florida Gold Coast history.
Mary Smutny, 18, swimming unattached, won the girls’ 1,000-yard freestyle in 10:15.88. SOFLO’s Kathleen Golding, 17, was second in a best time 10:17.22, dropping 2.06 and teammate Mallory Schleicher, 14, was third in 10:39.51.
On Saturday and Sunday, swimmers will get the opportunity to to see how they stack up against the rest of the nation’s age group swimmers.
Up-and-coming swimmers will compete in the IMR (Ready) Challenge. All sessions are timed finals.
The USA Swimming-sanctioned meet is a fun, motivational meet to help young swimmers reach the next level in their swimming careers.
The IMR Challenge allows swimmers to see how they compare to other swimmers around the nation in their age group. Swimmers must compete in all the events required for their age group to establish a score.
Once a swimmer competes in each IM Ready event at least once in an official meet, swimmers and parents can check their rankings on USA Swimming’s website.
The IMX (Xtreme) Challenge is the next step-up from the IMR competition. It includes a series of five or six events. Once swimmers complete the IMX program they can also see where their score ranks nationally, among their local LSC and own swim club.
On Saturday, the 10-and-under and 11-12 IMR events are 100 IM, 200 IM, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle and begin at 8:30 a.m. The 13-and-over 200 backstroke, 200 breaststroke and 400 IM begin 12:30 p.m.
On Sunday at 8:30 a.m., the 10-and-under and 12-and-under events are 50 backstroke, 100 backstroke, 50 breaststroke, 100 breaststroke, 50 butterfly and 100 butterfly. The 13-and-over events begin at noon and include the 200 butterfly, 200 IM and 500 freestyle.
1. Mary Smutny, Unattached 10:15.88, 2. Kathleen Golding, SOFLO 10:17.22, time drop, 3. Mallory Schleicher, SOFLO 10:39.51; SOFLO: 5. Paige Lane 10:44.14, time drop, 11. Molly Golding 11:06.59, 12. Maya Coffey 11:13.62.
1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 9:48.23, 2. Maxwell Miller, YSF 9:48.54, 3. Cameron Taddonio, BRST 9:48.63; SOFLO: 4. Philopatier Ibrahim 10:10.68, 6. Leonardo Mateus 10:20.87, 7. Robert Wilson 10:25.22, 8. Lance Lesage 10:25.51, time drop, 9. Nicolas Rossi 10:25.66, time drop.
IF YOU GO
What: SOFLO IMX/IMR Challenge
Schedule: Saturday, 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.; Sunday, 8:30 a.m. and noon.
Where: Academic Village Pool, 17191 Sheridan Street, Pembroke Pines
Admission: $5 per session. Heat sheets are free and available on Meet Mobile or http://www.soflomeets.info/IMX. For information call 954-538-3721.
Sharon Robb can be reached at email@example.com