In an earlier post I wrote about an up-and-coming Colorado swimmer named Missy Franklin. She recently competed in her first world swimming championship in Shanghai. To say her participation was a success is an understatement.
Franklin finished with three gold medals, a silver and a bronze. She helped the USA team win the most gold medals of any nation (17), while host China took home the most medals overall (36).
Missy is a 16-year old junior-to-be at Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora, Colo. She is talented well beyond her years.
Franklin began her championship experience by helping team USA win a silver medal in the 4x100-meter freestyle relay on the first day of competition. Later in the meet Franklin helped win the gold in the 4x200-meter free relay with an amazing opening leg. Her 200-meter swim was so fast that had she been competing in the individual 200-meter free earlier in the championship, she would have won the gold by half-a-second. And she swam in the relay just 30 minutes after winning bronze in the 50-meter backstroke.
But Missy saved her best performance for last. On one of the last days of the meet, Franklin won a gold medal with a stunning swim in the 200-meter backstroke. Not only did she set an American record (her second), but her time of 2 minutes, 5.1 seconds is the third fastest time ever recorded in the event.
So how did Missy get into swimming? A Universal Sports announcer calling one of Missy's races at the championships mentioned that her mother said her own fear of the water got Missy into the pool at the age of six months. I can relate. My mom couldn't swim so I and all my siblings were competitive swimmers. But none of us competed at a world championship like Ms. Franklin. I can't wait to see her compete in the Olympics next year.