Ian Finnerty Poised to Make Most of ISL — In and Out of Water

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Ian Finnerty; Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Ian Finnerty, DC TridentIn the lead-up to the first International Swimming League pro-team season, Swimming World will look at some of the pioneers of a new chapter unfolding in the sport. Today: Fastest breaststroker in NCAA history.

Pioneers Of Pro-Team Swimming

Olivia Smoliga
Katie McLaughlin
• Ian Finnerty

Ian Finnerty is looking forward to being part of the DC Trident in the new International Swimming League.

While most professional swimmers are looking forward to the racing the new league will bring, the recent Indiana graduate has even more to look forward to.

Finnerty is currently working on his masters at Indiana in Athletic Administration and Sports Management, hoping to enter the athletic world from another side after he is done competing.

“It has been interesting to see ISL as a new sports entity,” Finnerty told Swimming World. “It has a lot to do with my major. It has been cool to watch.”

Having someone like Kaitlin Sandeno as his general manager, who continued on in the sport after her competitive career was over is also an added boost for Finnerty.

“I would love to do more on the other side of it after I was done swimming,” he said. “I have talked with Kaitlin Sandeno about that already. That is what I want to do when I am done. It will be nice to take the experience on this side of things and take that to the business side.”

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Ian Finnerty at US Nationals; Photo Courtesy: Connor Trimble

Of course, Finnerty isn’t ready to rush into that side. He is very comfortable in the competitive part of the sport and looking forward to his first season as a professional.

“I think it is really great. They have taken a giant leap into it with meets all over the world. I am excited to see how the meets flow — should be interesting,” he said. “It is going to be nice to race short-course meters. I haven’t really gotten to do that. It is going to be a lot like the college training cycle with mid-season meets.”

Finnerty proved he can dominate in short course, breaking the NCAA record in the breaststroke as the first man under 50 seconds — then defending his title in 2019. But what Finnerty is looking forward to the most is getting to race some of the fastest swimmers from around the world.

“For me, I haven’t had too much international experience since World University Games,” Ian Finnerty said. “So getting to race some of the best people in the world is going to be very beneficial for me. I am looking forward to that.”

Moving into an Olympic year, Finnerty wants to take every opportunity to tighten up his races so everything is in place at trials.

“It is a good chance to tighten up starts and turns because they are going to be so much more important,” he said. “I am going to try to bring a little more power into my long course race and this will be big for that.”

While he isn’t sure what to expect, Finnerty has already put together some goals for himself in the ISL, especially if the DC Trident make the championship meet in December.

“I really hope that my yards experience carries over to meters,” Ian Finnerty said. “If we make the championship, I would love to break the American record and get as close to the world record as possible.”

That would be a stellar way to finish the first ISL season, and give Finnerty plenty of momentum heading into 2020.