Swimming World Presents “Up & Comers: Michael Pickett”

Photo Courtesy: John Gatfield

Up & Comers: Michael Pickett

Sponsored by Spectrum Aquatics

Many young athletes dream of the chance to represent their country in international competition, and New Zealand’s Michael Pickett recently had that dream come true at the 2018 Junior Pan Pacific Championships, Aug. 23-26.

While there, Pickett finished third in the 50 meter freestyle (22.86) and 12th in the 100 (50.89), while also helping his teammates to three fifth-place finishes in the men’s 400 medley and 400 freestyle relays and the mixed 400 medley relay.

Pickett has shown his speed ever since he was 12 years old when he first started breaking New Zealand national age group records. He now has 11 such records across the ages of 12 through 16. His most recent NAG mark came on his 16th birthday, Aug. 17, when he blasted a 22.31 for the 50 free (SCM) at the McDonald’s Queensland Short Course Championships in Australia. His time lowered Orinoco Fa’amausili Banse’s 2007 NAG standard of 22.98.

John Gatfield, assistant head coach at St. Peters Western Swimming Club (Brisbane, Australia), told Swimming World,“Michael is a worker and embraces the challenge of hard work. Since coming (from New Zealand) into our program at St. Peters Western in January this year, he has grown a lot—he knows and understands that everything we do now is a small stepping stone and investment into our goal of Tokyo 2020 and beyond.”

In addition to being a talented swimmer, Pickett also excels in soccer and basketball.

Gatfield added, “He’s an athletic lad and clearly loves to keep active and social in other sports or games outside of the pool. He’s got a very relaxed attitude and keeps good balance with his work and play. But come training or race time…he’s on!”

To learn more about Pickett and his many accomplishments, check out the October 2018 issue of Swimming World Magazine, available now!  Swimming World subscribers can download this issue in the Swimming World Vault!

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[PHOTO COURTESY: PETER H. BICK]

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FEATURES

022 SWIMMING’S RESPECTFUL REBEL
by Annie Grevers
Michael Andrew turned pro at the age of 14. He embraced the non-traditional Ultra-Short Race-Pace Training. Despite his naysayers, the 19-year-old fully believes he’s doing what he needs to do to pull out his God-given potential. And he proved it this summer with his men’s high-point performance at nationals and a 50 free gold medal at the Pan Pacific Championships.

026 FOR LOVE OF THE SPORT
by David Rieder
Kathleen Baker has always loved swimming. It’s been a motivating force that has helped her battle Crohn’s disease and that has led her to help others believe they can overcome their own medical challenges. And it’s a quality that she has shown throughout her career that’s included a world record, Olympic gold and silver plus medals of every color at the 2017 World Championships and 2018 Pan Pacific Championships.

030 A TRANSITION YEAR
by Dan D’Addona
College swimming may have lost the top two swimmers in the world—with Katie Ledecky turning pro and Caeleb Dressel graduating—but there will still be plenty of storylines to follow this college season.

COACHING

010 LESSONS WITH THE LEGENDS: DON WATSON
by Michael J. Stott

014 SWIMMING TECHNIQUE CONCEPTS: ISCA HALL OF FAME SUMMIT
by Rod Havriluk
This month’s article reports some of the highlights and coach reactions from the International Swim Coaches Association annual conference, held Aug. 28-31, in Clearwater Beach, Fla. Many coaches are now applying science to support their swimmers to swim faster and with fewer injuries.

016 TOYS FOR BOYS…AND GIRLS
by Michael J. Stott
Thanks to new and innovative equipment for training, today’s swimmers have enjoyed more productive workouts, resulting in faster swimming.

040 KNOW THYSELF…AND YOUR OPPONENT
by Michael J. Stott
A good race plan and an awareness of your opponents’ tendencies can help you perform at your best.

042 Q&A WITH COACH KAMI GARDNER
by Michael J. Stott

043 HOW THEY TRAIN EMILY HAGEBOECK
by Michael J. Stott

JUNIOR SWIMMER

045 UP & COMERS: MICHAEL PICKETT
by Taylor Brien

COLUMNS

008 A VOICE FOR THE SPORT
013 BEYOND THE YARDS
018 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE
032 PREP SCHOOL DIRECTORY
046 GUTTER TALK
048 PARTING SHOT

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Author: Taylor Brien

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Taylor Brien is the Assistant Operations Manager and a staff writer 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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