Below The Surface With Chris Rattray

Photo Courtesy: Taylor Brien

Swimming World is producing the live webcast of the 2016 CeraVe Invitational on the campus of Rutgers University. Click here to watch the live stream, view video interviews and watch races on demand!

Commentary by Woohee Han, Swimming World Intern 2016 CeraVe Invitational

Chris Rattray has a deep relationship with Swimming World, about 6 to 14 feet deep depending on which pool you’re at. Even in the current, he works with the distinguished swim magazine whenever he gets the opportunity. But as with all experiences, he had to have gotten his feet wet at some point and for Rattray, it began in his high school years.

Rattray was no stranger to the world of swimming in his youth. Not only did he swim as a member of the Berkeley Aquatic Club from 2007 to 2011, when he was in high school, but so did his older twin brother Cameron and younger brother Andrew, who is in fact swimming in the 2016 CeraVe Invitational this year. In addition, his mother is an official and his father an announcer for the CeraVe meets.

His first time at the CeraVe Invitational was in 2008, which was called the Burgdorff Invitational back then. However, his career with Swimming World began in 2009, when he first worked as a high school intern. Rattray was a videographer and an announcer for the preliminaries and the finals. Although he did not swim that year due to an injury, he did not know that it marked the start of a completely different swim-related career that he would continue to pursue in the future.

Rattray’s talents were not only restricted to the CeraVe meets; soon after his internship at CeraVe, he went to work at the College Conference Carnival, a women’s swim team meet hosted by Rutgers. There he had the opportunity to meet Josh Davis, an Olympian who had won three gold medals in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games and 2 silver medals in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, among the many other medals from other competitions, such as the World Championships and the Pan Pacific Championships. Davis had been working as the announcer at the meet, so Rattray was able to talk to and get to know someone who was undoubtedly a hero for many young swimmers.

In 2011, as a high school senior, he started working as the lead producer, which is his role in Swimming World today. As lead producer, Rattray trained the interns working as cameramen, produced the livestream, and uploaded videos onto Swimming World’s website.

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Photo Courtesy: Taylor Brien

After graduating high school, he started attending Drexel University in Philadelphia to study film and video. Due to class commitments, he could not attend the CeraVe meet in 2012, but he came back to work in 2013 as a sophomore in college, after receiving a call from Brent Rutemiller, the CEO and publisher of Swimming World.

2013 and 2014 were life-changing years for Rattray. As a part of a cooperative education program offered by Drexel University, he was able to do an internship for six months. Rattray moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where the Swimming World headquarters are located, and worked as an associate producer. There he helped produce five online TV shows, including the Morning Swim Show, The Week That Was, and Tech Talk. He also undertook underwater photography for techniques in Swimming World magazines from the 2014 January to June issues.

Not only that (step aside, Josh Davis), he got to meet two other Olympians: Matt Grevers and Darian Townsend. Both of which are gold medalists and world record holders themselves. But, staying true to his roots, he continued to work at swim meets, including the 2013 Tom Dolan Invitational, the 2014 CeraVe Invitational, the 2014 Eastern State Championships, and the 2014 NCSA Junior Nationals in Orlando.

From Orlando, he went back to Phoenix to gather his belongings and move back to Philadelphia to finish school at Drexel. Since then, he has continued to work with Swimming World, working as lead producer once again for the 2015 CeraVe and the 2016 CeraVe this weekend. Since 2015, he has been working as a freelancer with Swimming World, finally getting the big bucks for his talents.

For Rattray, working with Swimming World has been a fuel to his fiery passion for not only swimming, but sports broadcasting. In the future, he hopes to find a full-time job working for a sports media company or TV station, such as ESPN and NBC, and maybe even working in the Olympics. However, with Rattray’s deep history and passion for sports broadcasting, there is no doubt that soon, these hopes will no longer be hopes but a reality.

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Author: Taylor Brien

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Taylor Brien is the Circulation and Operations Manager at Swimming World. A native of Bettendorf, IA and a 2015 graduate of Illinois College, she has covered a variety of events since joining the SW team in 2015, including the NCAA Championships, World Championships, Olympic Trials, and 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

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