May 17th, 2024

Biffart excited for Olympic trials opportunity

By JAMES TUBB on April 20, 2024.


Rowynn Biffart is approaching her first Olympic trials experience with a simple mindset, it’s just another race.

The 15-year-old Medicine Hat swimmer will head to Toronto May 13-19 for Swimming Canada’s 2024 Olympic trials ahead of the 2024 Olympics games held in Paris, France.

She qualified for the Olympic trials last year and swam in the 2023 Bell Canadian Swimming Trials. Now, entering her first Olympic opportunity, Biffart is looking forward to showcasing her abilities.

“I’m very excited, it’s a cool opportunity and experience for me,” Biffart said.

She has qualified for five races, the 50m Free (breaking a club record in the process), 100m Breast stroke, 100m Fly, 200m Breast stroke and 200m IM. She considers the IM race, which involves four swimming strokes for a distance of 50 metres each – butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke then freestyle, her favourite category to race in.

Biffart’s 200m Breast stroke time is at the senior level with the other four races at the junior qualifying level. When asked about the idea of qualifying for an Olympics at the age of 15, Biffart says it came a little quicker than expected.

“It would be very exciting, super duper cool,” she said.

Her coach Jordan Harper with the Alberta Marlin Aquatic Club says they have one more event before the Olympic trials and they hope she could sneak in a couple other qualifications to give her a full-week of races in Toronto.

Harper isn’t surprised to see Biffart at this level, he says these trials will be a stepping stone for her moving forward and he expects she’ll elevate to the competition in the lanes next to her.

“You get to go there with a lot of the big names from her standpoint that she’s looked up to and idolizes a lot,” Harper said. “There’s a lot of strong female athletes right now in Canada and she’s striving to be one of those top girls. This step to be able to go to this meet and in her junior category she’ll be in the top five mix and in more than a couple events.”

Biffart is looking forward to the idea of racing alongside Canada’s best in swimmers such as Penny Oleksiak, Summer McIntosh, Keira Smith and others. But she seems them as just more competitors.

The Olympic trials were supposed to be held in Montreal at the Centre sportif du Parc Olympique but were moved to Toronto due to damages. Biffart’s raced in the Toronto pool before, for the Bell trials and nationals, previous experience she says helps ease any nerves.

“It’s just another pool,” Biffart said. “I like the Toronto pool, it’s big and bright.”

Harper says there are a lot of qualities that have brought her to the level of success she’s had, with a need to be first to the wall met with a constant desire to get better and ask questions when needed. He says Biffart can find another level when needed and is looking forward to seeing her exhibit that on the biggest stage she’s faced.

“She always has a very good mindset at the pool, between us the communication has been pretty good, so if she’s not feeling great on a stroke in the morning and we try to make a couple changes instead of trying to beat that with a stick,” Harper said. “We just make changes and we’re able to push on the days we can, in a smart direction as an athletes and not try to force something that’s not there.

“Overall what makes her special is just wanting to work hard. When she races in finals, the elevation is pretty crazy. Just being competitive, working hard and just she’s just a really good kid overall.”

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