Hard work by KISU’s Jaren Lefranc resulted in his selection to Team BC in swimming for the Western Canada Summer Games.
“It was pretty awesome. I didn’t swim the best at the selection meets,” said Lefranc, who will be joined by his coach Tina Hoeben. “It was a nice surprise. I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it.”
SwimBC made the announcement Tuesday afternoon confirming the selection for the Games taking place in Fort McMurray, Alta., Aug.5-16. The swimming events is Aug.13-16.
Doubts crept into Lefranc’s mind since he didn’t have a strong performance during the B.C. open due to illness.
“It’s really nice moving forward,” said Lefranc. “Just knowing I will have this under my belt. Once you get into the higher levels, it’s nice to have this kind of competition.”
Hoeben said “it’s very cool” and “a big honour” for Lefranc to be selected.
“It will be a great experience. They are really putting a lot into the preparation of the team,” she said, adding that they will attend a swim meet in Tucson, Ariz., in early June. “The competition is very stiff for that team. I think it’s just a great experience. To go with that team, get extra swim meets and … going against the best in Western Canada.”
Hoeben said Lefranc has had a very good season and he is focused and committed to becoming a better swimmer.
“He’s really been determined and shown huge dedication to the sport in order to achieve the improvement he has seen,” she said.
As for her selection, Hoeben said “that’s a huge honor.”
“I was surprised at that. I’m quite excited to be the coach of this team,” she said.
“The selection committee used a criteria to choose a team that has strength and depth, and we were pleased that almost all of the swimmers nominated were able and willing to compete at this event for Team BC,” said SwimBC’s team leader Mike Flegel in a press release. “The swimmers represent almost every region from across BC, and should be one of the strongest teams we’ve ever fielded at this competition.”
In other KISU news, Lefranc and Riley Wall competed in the Prospects West camp in Lethbridge last weekend. The event featured the top swimmers from B.C., Alberta as well as Saskatchewan and Manitoba combined. The B.C. team took the top six 14- and 15-year-old boys. From the girls side, it was the top 13 and 14-year-olds. While there, Lefranc and Wall competed in meets and worked on different skills to improve. Both contributed to B.C. winning the first meet.
“In the second meet they go on how much you improve from first meet, it wasn’t just about winning,” said Hoeben, “it was about being better and faster.”
Wall improved in both his swims, while Lefranc won both his races in the 100 and 200 metre breast stroke. Both also helped B.C. win the boys relay.
This weekend KISU will host a Okanagan Region jamboree. KISU has 40 swimmers competing. The action is at the Penticton Community Centre with races starting at 10:15 a.m. to 2 p.m.