TCU - Cooper Robinson
His successes include one school record in the 200yd backstroke (1:43.41) and multiple NCAA “B” cuts
Bowling Green State University
U.S. News and World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges” nationally recognized BGSU among the top national universities with a strong commitment to teaching undergrad
University of Richmond - Matt Barany
During his time with the program his swimmers have reached the NCAA Championships, earned All-American status and broken over 60 school marks
by Josh Huger (MrUtopia)
Created January 6th, 2012 04:34:15 PM
Modified January 6th, 2012 04:34:15 PM
The University of Georgia’s Wendy Trott is this week’s featured swimmer. Wendy, who is currently a senior with the Bulldogs, has enjoyed many successes throughout her career.
Her successes include a ninth place finish at the 2008 Olympics in the 800 meter freestyle, multiple NCAA titles, several UG school records, multiple SEC titles, and the distinction of being named the winner of the 2011-12 Joel Eaves Scholar-Athlete Award as the female student-athlete entering her senior academic year with the highest grade point average in the athletic program.
In this SwimUtopia interview Wendy tells us her most memorable moment so far with the team and what the Georgia coaching staff does to help set her up repeatedly for success.
Let’s get started!
What made you choose The University of Georgia?
What I noticed and couldn’t forget on my recruiting trip here was the passion every single one of the coaches felt for the sport, this team, and this school, and it really touched me. Also, I really appreciated the emphasis that people here placed on academic achievement and creating college graduates who were well-rounded in all aspects of life.
What other schools did you look at during your recruiting process?
Auburn and Stanford.
Your roster page says that you are from Cape Town, South Africa. How has the training here in the United States differed from back home?
The biggest difference is obviously the quality and number of training partners that I have here, which I’m so lucky to have and which I think is unique to Georgia.
What is it like training with everyone at UG?
We’re all super competitive all the time, so we’re racing each other every day which I think is awesome. No matter what kind of practice you’re doing there’s always someone next to you who’s trying to beat you and push you.
At the 2011 NCAA Championships you claimed first place in the 1,650 freestyle for the third straight year. What does this winning streak do to your confidence and thinking as you get closer to your final NCAAs?
It’s a good feeling knowing I have that behind me, but it really doesn’t mean much going into this year’s NCAAs as you never know what’s going to happen, it’s different every year. But I think it does help with the nerves to think back on what I’ve already done and get some confidence, I think that goes for everyone.
What does the Georgia coaching staff do to help set you up for success?
They’re great in that they’re willing to do absolutely anything to help you be your best. Often they come in early to practice or stay late to help someone, or write practices for someone to do during a break. If you’re willing to put in the effort, there’s really nothing they won’t do if you ask them.
What is your most memorable moment so far with the team?
Winning SECs in 2010 as a team. It was the greatest feeling mostly because I had never had so much fun in a meet before and because it was at our home pool, which was awesome.
What would you say your biggest accomplishment has been in swimming so far?
I think getting 9th in the Beijing Olympics and 6th and 7th at the Worlds in Shanghai this past summer.
What are your top times?
400 free: 4:08
800 free: 8:26
1500 free: 16:05
What would you say motivates you?
The desire to be the best I can before I stop swimming and wish I’d done more! That, and my team.
What is your favorite pump-up band or artist to listen to before racing?
I go through stages, sometimes music like David Guetta or Tiesto or Benni Benassi, sometimes Rage against the Machine and Queens of the Stoneage.
Do you have any pre-meet rituals?
What records do you hold?
African and South African records in the 400, 800 and 1500 free, school record in the 1650.
What would you say is the hardest practice that you have ever done?
There are different kinds of hard, and it depends on when you do them. When I was with my old coach, Karoly von Toros in Cape Town, he used to give us a set of 5x1500s race long course, preceded and followed by fly sets. With Harvey, my coach here, we do 2x3000s race pretty often. But sometimes the hardest set for me can be 100s off the blocks because it’s so difficult for me to sprint!
At what point in your life did you know that you wanted to take swimming to the next level?
I can’t even remember a time when I didn’t know that. In my mind that memory goes along with my first memories of swimming, which were when I was about 7 or 8.
What’s the strangest talent that you have?
The ability to go faster when I negative-split a race than when I go out hard!