Rising fourth year Lauren Perdue advances to the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London this summer after finishing fourth place in the women’s 200-meter freestyle race with a time of 1:57.75 Thursday night. Despite having back surgery that kept her out of the NCAA National Championships in March, Perdue proved that she is fully recovered and ready to represent the red, white, and blue; as well as our own orange and blue, in London this summer.
WUVA Online got a chance to talk to our fellow olympic wahoo about her exciting Olympic qualifying, and her trip to London this summer. Here’s what she said:
WUVA: How did you feel when you touched the wall and saw your time after the race?
Perdue: I was ecstatic when I touched the wall in the finals of the 200 meter freestyle and saw that I had placed 4th, automatically qualifying for the 4×200 freestyle relay at the Olympics.
WUVA: Are you excited to be attending the 2012 Olympics in London this summer?
Perdue: I have been dreaming of this moment since I was a little girl. Being able to accomplish this life goal and represent USA as well as UVA is an opportunity that I will cherish for a lifetime.
WUVA: Were you expecting to qualify?
Perdue: Going into Olympic Trials, I did not expect to swim as fast as I did. I had back surgery three months ago and have not been 100% in my preparation for Trials. Making the Olympic Team was unexpected; however now that I will be wearing the red, white and blue, I will do everything within my power to represent USA and UVA with pride and strength.
WUVA: Have you actually ever been to London before?
Perdue: I have never been to London, but I have always wanted to visit! London is such a classic and beautiful city, and I love the history behind it so I am very excited.
WUVA: Are there any swimmers/athletes that you look up to?
Perdue: The Olympic swim team this year is a mix of veterans and newcomers. I look up to the individuals who have competed in the Olympics two or three times before this one. They are experienced in international competitions and I will be looking to them for guidance and leadership.
Perdue will compete as part of the 4 x 200 Women’s relay team in London this month. She joins former UVA teammate Matt McClean, who will be competing as an alternate on the men’s 4 x 200 Men’s relay team. McClean qualified for the Olympics by placing fifth place Wednesday night.
Good luck to all former and current wahoos representing UVA and the USA in the Olympic Games this summer! Help our US Olympic team bring home some gold for the red, white, and blue! Wahoowa and Go USA!