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14-Under State Championship Preview

Courtesy Chattahoochee Gold Swimming Facebook page
Courtesy Chattahoochee Gold Swimming Facebook page

It’s that time of year again, everyone: rubber ducky decorating time!! Have you ever turned a plain yellow duckling into a superhero good luck charm complete with face paint and clothing and, let’s face it, an overwhelming aura of awesome? Gold swimmers do every year! Let me explain.

The Lucky Duck tradition is one of the many perks of being a Chattahoochee Gold State Qualifier. Each year, hundreds of swimmers from around the state of Georgia aim to swim faster than the qualifying standards for the 14-under State Championships, which earns them a spot on their club’s state team.

Chattahoochee Gold swimmers have worked their little tails off for months now in anticipation of this opportunity. With all the preceding meets now complete, the numbers are in and Gold is bringing, drum roll, please…NINETY-NINE swimmers to State!

This ties our all-time record number of qualifiers! It is an exhilarating time for those 99 young athletes who will head to Georgia Tech’s Olympic Pool and represent their team February 21-23, 2014. They will be swimming the gamut from the short and sweet 50 yard freestyle to the grueling and intense 400 individual medley.

Where do the ducks come in? Ah, well you see, to get prepared for such demanding racing these swimmers have already done the physical work. They’ve been practicing multiple times a week since August, putting in the kicking, swimming, flip turning hard work they hoped would pay off. Now it’s time to top off the confidence so each swimmer can love their State experience. No better way to do that than have a stylish yellow companion as your lucky charm and mini-mascot! You can’t help but grin when you see a rubber ducky with a feather boa and glittery wings. Believe me.

This week, the 99 will convene for delicious pizza and the ceremonious retelling of the duck tale. (Yes, there is a whole story involved. Don’t pretend you’re not intrigued.) Each swimmer will receive this year’s original design State 2014 t-shirt and take their new ducky friend home for his or her makeover. Even the shirt design is a much-anticipated surprise! Spoiler alert: It involves ducks. I know, I didn’t see that coming either! There is indeed much pomp and circumstance to this state week, and deservedly so for the talented and hard-working kids who’ve made it this far. Congratulations to all our Gold State Qualifiers, and good luck next weekend!

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