Swimming on the island is about to take a new stroke.
That’s because a brand new club called Swim Kaua’i Aquatics is about to take shape on February 27, 2006.
Former Island School athletic director and head swim coach Ro Davis, along with other top swim coaches around the island, have joined forces to put a new twist on island swimming.
“Our goal is to make sure that every kid on the island has a chance to be a competitive swimmer,” Davis said.
His son and current Island School head swim coach Greg Davis, along with Tom Coxwell (Kaua’i swim coach), Mary Davis, Melissa Hall, Dick Oliver, and Kathleen “Kaki” Williams make up the all-star teaching squad.
“We’ll have each part of the island covered, from Princeville to Waimea. We know it’s hard on parents to get their kids to go to practices that are far from where they live, so we just want to give them an opportunity to get quality swim instruction from qualified individ-uals close to their place of residence,” Davis said.
The former Palo Alto High School head swim coach also wants to take youths off-island to get much needed exposure to better athletes from around the state and the country.
“You have to go off-island to improve and that’s one of the main things we’re working on,” Davis said.
As of yesterday, two swimmers are on the team, Island School’s Ben Baldwin and Michelle Woltmon.
Both athletes recently came home from the Pearl City Invitational with high marks.
Baldwin, a star cross country runner, swam 10 events. He was 2nd in the 200 breast, third in the 100 fly, 200 fly, and 400 IM. He also tied for 4th in the 50 free and was 5th in the 200 IM and 100 breast.
Overall, Baldwin placed in the top five in seven of his 10 events.
“Despite concentrating on cross country from September through mid-November, he was at, or bettered all of his lifetime best times for these events. He was not rested, tapered, or shaved for this meet,” Davis said.
Baldwin will compete in the state championships on Maui later this month.
Meanwhile, Woltmon swam lifetime best times in the 50 free, 100 back, 200 IM, and placed well overall in all six of her events.
The club is just getting started and if you’d like more information, contact Ro Davis at 635-6897.
Davis is also the meet director for the upcoming KIF swim season. He is currently looking for volunteers for the meets and he said that no experience is necessary to help out. Contact Davis at the aforementioned number if you’d like to volunteer.