Manson qualifies for 2008 Summer Olympics in high jump, becomes second from Men's Track and Field on USA squad
July 18, 2008
The meet that changed his life forever began on June 30 for Berens when he qualified fourth out of the 200-meter freestyle preliminary round at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials in Omaha, Neb. Berens qualified fifth in that evening's semifinal round to earn a spot in the finals on July 1, when he took a surprising third place in a new personal-best time of 1:46.14 to earn his first spot on the U.S. Olympic Team.
Berens, Walters, Spann and the rest of the U.S. Olympic Team members departed Omaha on July 7 and began their U.S. Olympic Team Training Camp on July 8 in Palo Alto, Calif. The teams will remain in Palo Alto through July 25, when they will head to their next training camp site in Singapore before departing for Beijing.
For Berens, the reality of making the U.S. Olympic team has yet to sink in completely.
"For now, it feels like I'm on another National Team trip," said Berens, who represented the United States last summer at the Pan American Games in Brazil. "Once we get to Beijing and start training there, it will start to hit me."
The Olympic training camp has presented Berens and his Texas teammates a unique opportunity to work with their college coach, Eddie Reese, in a national-team setting, but also the chance to experience the workout regimen placed on Michael Phelps by his coach, Bob Bowman.
"Dave (Walters) and I have been training with Phelps and the Club Wolverine guys, with coaches Bowman and (Jon) Urbanchek, and it has been worthwhile to see how they practice and train. We've been through some tough practices with those guys, but, of course, we've been through tough workouts with Eddie Reese, too. It's been great to see another perspective, training-wise."
As members of the 800-meter freestyle relay pool, Berens and Walters may get the opportunity to swim that relay with Phelps, who has informally set an ambitious goal for the relay in Beijing.
"We were in the middle of our training the other day, and (Michael) Phelps yells out, 'First 800 free relay under 7 minutes!,' Berens said. "So, yes, we've got a lot to train for before we get to Beijing."
U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials: A truly burnt orange affair
· Current and former Longhorns broke two world records, four U.S. Open records and four American records at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Future Horns Compete at FINA World Junior Championships
Friedland (Bethesda, Md.) placed fourth in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:16.08. Friedland took 16th place overall in the event at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Johnson (Nashville, Tenn.) took fourth in the 200-meter backstroke in 2:01.18. Johnson placed 23rd in the event at the U.S. Olympic Trials.