First workout was AFTER his first Masters meet
In January 1978, when John was 47 years old he was introduced to Masters swimming. He was at a company party when a friend of his said, "I'm going home early to rest up for a Masters swim meet."
"A what?" John asked.
The friend invited John to go to the meet and also to swim. So he went, not having been in a meet since college, 26 years before. "When I got up on the block and heard the gun go off, I was hooked"! John reports. "My first workout was after the meet. Getting in shape was painful, and I swam my old specialty, backstroke, for two years before finding I was better at breaststroke."
For workouts John states, "I just get at the end of the line and try to keep up! My favorite workout is to do 25's for as long as I can stand it on the minute."
John has held a numerous national and seven world records in different age groups in 50-meter, 100-meter and 200-meter breaststroke and one in the 50-meter butterfly. However, John reports, "There are two highlights of my Masters career. One is when I beat Manuel Sanguily in the 50 and 100 breaststroke at Long Course Nationals in Buffalo in 1988. The other is when I swam on a world record 240 plus mixed 200 medley relay in a 25-meter pool in November, 1996."
One of John's biggest disappointments in Master swimming was losing the 65-69 world record in the 100 long course meter breast by 0.13 seconds to Nick Templeman (1:26.06) of Canada in 1996. "I'll try again," John said.
John claims, "Masters swimming has turned out to be more fun than I ever could have imagined, from the workouts to the meets, and always—the fun of being with other swimmers."
As of June 2006, John has continued his record setting ways in the Men 75-79 age group and is rewriting the breaststroke records. John lives in Charlotte, N.C., and swims for the MAC Masters chapter of North Carolina Masters Swimming.