Columbia Swimmer, 10, Breaks Backstroke Record

April 01, 1992|By Rona Hirsch | Rona Hirsch,Staff writer

Ten-year-old Brian Best of Columbia broke a 13-year-old national YMCA record for his age group at the East Field Regional YMCA Swim Championship last weekend in Princeton, N.J.

Brian came in at 30.2 seconds in the 50-yard backstroke, lowering the previous record of 30.3, set in 1979 for the 10-and-under age group.

Brian, who swims for the Howard County YMCA team, also won the 100 backstroke and 50 butterfly on Saturday and came in second in the 100 freestyle Sunday.

"He definitely has a lot of potential," said team coach Matt Cetlinski, who competed in the 1988 Summer Olympics on the U.S. Swim Team.

"Also, he likes to work hard. He's just learning to race people now. He doesn't like to lose. That's a sign of someone who likes to do the job."

Brian has also added a state record to his accomplishments.

On March 8, he broke the United States Swim Maryland state record for the 50 backstroke at Towson State University, placing first at 30.74. The previous record, set in January, was 30.91.

Brian was motivated to drop his time because he was turning 11 and would no longer qualify to compete in that division.

"This was the last chance I had for besting the record," he said. "To break the record was one of my goals."

Brian has broken five team records this season:

* The 50 backstroke, set at the YMCA meet in New Jersey.

* The 100 freestyle record, set at the New Jersey meet with a time of 1:01.61. The previous record was set last year at 1:02.01.

* The 50 butterfly record, set at the New Jersey meet with a time of 30.13. The previous record was 30.81, set in 1986.

* The 100 backstroke, set at the March 8 Towson State meet, with a time of 1:06.88. The previous record was 1:13.40, set in 1986.

* The 50 freestyle, set at the Southern District Championship meet on March 14 atJohns Hopkins University, with a time of 27.83. The previous record was 28.43, set in 1991.

Brian is a fifth-grader at Bryant Woods Elementary School and lives in the Village of Hickory Ridge with his parents, Bob and Tish Best, and brother Alec, 8, who competed in the same division as his brother in the New Jersey meeting.

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