Q&A with National Teamer Blake Pieroni

Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold

By Justine Ress, Swimming World Intern

This week I spoke with national team newcomer and fellow Hoosier Blake Pieroni. He earned a spot on the U.S. National Team for his stellar performance in the 200 freestyle.

I wanted to find out more about Pieroni in and out of the pool. I managed to catch him between classes and right before the Hoosiers face off against Tennessee, Kentucky and North Carolina today (Oct. 30 at 2 p.m. Eastern Time).


Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold/Aringo

Q: What are you majoring in?

A: I’m majoring in Biology with a minor in Spanish.

Q: Who is your swimming idol and why?

A: I wouldn’t say I have a specific swimmer that I idolize. I look up to all of the USA Olympians because of all their accomplishments and dedication.

Q: What is your earliest swimming memory?

A: My earliest swimming memory was when I was 8. I was at an age group meet and I had just won my first ever heat winner. Moments after I was notified that I had been  disqualified for doing freestyle during the 50 yard fly.

Q: If you had to choose one person (famous or not) to have lunch with, who would it be?

A: Aaron Rodgers

Q: What is your proudest swimming accomplishment?

A: My proudest swimming accomplishment was being able to compete internationally on the national junior team.

Q: What is your one of your pre-race songs right now?

A: I don’t have a specific pump up song that I go to at the moment. However, I listen to Eminem to get pumped up before races.

Q: Do you have a pre-race ritual, if so what is it?

A: I listen to music and visualize my race, but I also like to pay attention to the heats prior to me; watch other people swim and be engaged in the meet.

Q: What is the best part about no longer being a freshman at IU?

A: The best park about no longer being a freshman is going into practices and meets and knowing what to expect and having something to base myself off of.

Q: What is the best part about being a new member of the US National Team?

A: The best part about being new to the national team is knowing that all the hard practices have been paying off and that I have continued to progress in the sport. Also how much of an honor it is to be on such a prestigious and elite team.

Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

A: In ten years I see myself having a quiet life in the country with a family and a job that I enjoy.

Q: What piece of advice would you give to young swimmers about the sport?

A: The best advice I can give young swimmers in this sport is to never believe that you aren’t good enough– if your mind believes you can do something your body will find a way. Also, have high expectations for yourself and love what you do.

1 Comment

1 comment

  1. avatar
    Bill Bell


    in 10 years you’ll have just finished competing in your second Olympiad here in LA and bask in the two gold medals/wrs you set in 200 free/800 free relay!

Author: Justine Ress

Justine graduated from Indiana University where she studied journalism and swam for four years. She earned All-American Honors her senior year in the 100 backstroke. Justine has represented France at European Championships and World University Games.

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