Time to shine

Jamaican swimmer Renuart getting faster and better

Observer staff reporter

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

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Bryanna Renuart is not at her best just yet.

But the budding breaststroker is learning with each experience what it takes to make it to the pinnacle in her swimming career.

Renuart, who resides in the Midwestern United States (US) state in Ohio, may not be well known by many Jamaicans outside of aquatics circles, but her name is sure to be on everyone's lips before too long.

She has so far mined a number of medals for Jamaica and is among the country's next generation of swimmers who are set for big breaks this year.

The 17-year-old is currently Jamaica's top age-group swimmer in the breaststroke and individual medley (IM) events, with no one being faster than her outside of Olympian Alia Atkinson and another rising sensation Breanna Roman.

Renuart, who earned her Jamaican stripes through her mother Cheridah Renuart, started representing the black, green and gold at age 12 and has since been captivated by the warmth and pride of the people.

“Representing Jamaica at various regional meets has been the most amazing experience of my life,” Renuart told the Jamaica Observer in a recent interview from her home in Akron, Ohio.

She continued: “When I first began swimming for Jamaica at age twelve, I was excited to travel to different countries, while sporting my black, green and gold uniform, but I was nervous to meet the other swimmers.

“But the team was extremely welcoming and I have made closer friends than I had anticipated, especially the ones in my age group.

“I also did not realise prior to swimming for Jamaica how proud I would be to represent my country. It is an incredible feeling to have a nation of proud supporters behind our team,” she asserted.

Renuart, in recollecting her journey through the ranks of Jamaica's aquatics programme, pointed out that it took a lot of patience and perseverance along a demanding path to being among the best in her age group, both locally and regionally.

“I knew it was going to require a lot of patience and perseverance for me to get to the point where I am at right now. I did not begin as a very impactful swimmer for Jamaica, but over the years I have pushed hard to make a difference on the team.

“The Jamaican coaches and swimmers have supported me greatly through this journey, and gave me the confidence and motivation which made my improvement possible,” the final year senior at the Walsh Jesuit school noted.

She added that her assiduous work and commitment over the years have helped in consistently lowering her times.

Renuart lowered her personal best in the 50-metre breaststroke to 34.35 seconds, while her personal best times in the 100m and 200m breaststroke now stand at 1:14.89 and 2:43.76, respectively. Her IM best time is 2:27.98.

“I did not improve as much as I was hoping to in the sprint freestyle events, but I am working to drop more time in those this coming year to help out the Jamaican team in relays,” she said in reference to the upcoming Carifta Swimming Championships to be hosted here at the National Aquatics Centre in March.

The Carifta Championships, which will be her final age-group event before moving into senior competition, will be her gateway to representing Jamaica at the Youth Olympic Games to be staged in Argentina in October. She is currently a mere second or two off the B cut times required for qualification.

The A and B standards for the 50m breaststroke currently stands at 32.69 and 33.83; the 100m breaststroke times are 1:11.98 and 1:14.50, with the 200m breaststroke times being 2:35.43 and 2:40.87. The times required for the IM are 2:20.41 or 2:25.32.

But prior to that, Renuart, who is blessed with tremendous endurance and aided by her participation in track and field and cross country could make her senior international debut at the 23rd Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games to be held in Colombia in July.

“I am hoping to continue dropping time and become a better swimmer... one of my goals is to be one of the leaders on the Carifta team this year and to help Jamaica place higher than we have in years past,” Renuart declared.

“Additionally, I am working to qualify for the CAC games and the Youth Olympics, and I'm hoping to do this with a lot of technique work and dedicating more time to swimming.

“In previous years, I have been limited to about eight months of training for swimming due to track and cross country for my high school. However, this year I will be able to swim all 12 months, so that increase should make a big difference in my times,” she ended.




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