FRIDAY, JULY 27: Those who know Roy Burch will readily testify what an avid competitor he is. Having competed in Beijing, he is more focused this time around and will not be in awe of all the hoopla surrounding the Games. Reaching the podium would be the highest goal he has set for himself for the London Olympics, but it’s not the only one.
How old were you when you started swimming and what got you involved in the sport?
I have been swimming my whole life. I joined a club team when I was five years old. My mother wanted to make sure I knew how to swim since Bermuda is surrounded by water
What do you enjoy about it?
I enjoy competing as an individual as a part of a team. Growing up I was always taught to use my gifts. I competed in many other sports but I always ranked higher in swimming.
When did you believe or what made you think you might be good enough to be an Olympian some day?
Anyone who loves to compete wants to reach the highest level of their sport. There was never a point in time were I didn’t believe I could be an Olympian. For me it was always about how I would be able to compete against the best swimmers/Olympians in the world. For a long time I watched the Olympics and tried to understand what made them so fast. Now I’ve had the opportunity to train with some of the fastest swimmers in the world. More importantly I’ve been able to race the best swimmers, which has given me lots of insight and experience into what it takes to be a world class swimmer.
What are you taking from the last Olympics to help you this time around?
The last Olympics was an experience that I will never forget. I was very disappointed with my race, which pushed me to try again for London. One of the only things that I can take from the last Olympics is preparation. I’ve had many more hours of training and race preparation to give me confidence for these games.
Which fellow Bermudian Olympian(s) are you looking forward to hanging out with and why?
It will be great to see everyone. I’ve known Tyler Butterfield and Flora Duffy for a long time so it will be good to catch up with them and watch them compete at their best.
Besides the competition, what are you most looking forward to about the Games?
I haven’t actually thought past the competition. I’ve spent a lot of time focused on my race and I will continue to do so. I think once I’m done competing I will enjoy watching the others compete. I’ve visited London many times before but it will be nice to revisit such an historical city.
What’s your goal for placement at the Olympics and why?
I would be lying if I said I my goal was anything else but getting on the podium. A podium finish is not my only goal but it’s my highest. It’s going to be really tough making it through the rounds but I feel good about making it to the top 16. After that it’s any man’s race and I will evaluate my position once I reach that point. I will have to race my hardest and make no mistakes. I’ve worked as hard as anyone who will be competing. Focus and poise will help get me to my goals.Age: 26
Olympics: Competed at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Did you know? Roy is Bermuda’s tallest Olympian (6’1’) and heaviest (176 lbs).
Schedule: The heats for the 50m free start at 6am (Bermuda Time) on Thursday, August 2.
The semis are scheduled to take place at 5:30pm on the same day. The finals are slated for 4:09pm on Friday, August 3.