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Victoria women triumphs at regional Special Olympics swim meet

Triple-threat athlete secures victory and qualifies for provincials, defying initial doubts
Multi-sport athlete Amanda Arnet poses with her bowling shoes, golf ball, and swim goggles after finishing first in the 100-metre freestyle swim. (Black Press Media file photo)

It was a no-ordinary dip in the pool for triple-threat athlete Amanda Arnet when she swam to first place at the regional Special Olympic qualifiers.

For the 100-metre freestyle swim finals, Arnet’s time was only two minutes and fifty-two-point-fifty-seven seconds, blowing her competition out of the water in the Comox Valley on Feb 25.

“I felt very proud and I knew my family would be proud,” Arnet said, reflecting on the moment she made it to the finish line.

Arnet excelled and has the chance to qualify for the Special Olympic provincials, which will be hosted by Prince George next year. However, her victory wasn’t without doubt. At one point during the swimmers’ first-place race, she thought she had been disqualified.

“I thought I touched the bottom of the pool,” Arnet said.

However, she was shocked to find out that she had not only qualified but also won the race.

Arnet also competed in the 50-metre freestyle finals, the 50-metre and 100-metre backstroke finals, and the 200-metre freestyle and 200-metre backstroke competitions.

Arnet first became interested in swimming when a friend from her independent living program told her about the Special Olympics. From there, Arnet started practicing.

“I just love swimming. So I wanted to join and I’m so glad I did because it keeps me fit,” she said.

The athlete also competes in the Special Olympics for both bowling and golf. Arnet also found her passion for 10-pin bowling through another friend in the same program.

“I was like ‘that sounds fun.’ So I tried it out and now I have my ball and my bag and all that stuff.”

Soon after, Arnet took a liking to golf after watching a family member play. Initially, she practiced on Cedar Hill Golf Course, conveniently located across the street from her home.

“My brother-in-law, he plays golf a lot, and I just thought I’d take after him a little bit.”

Arnet’s excited for the upcoming round of golf and bowling regionals. Her next competition will be the bowling regionals, held in Victoria on March 17.

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About the Author: Ella Matte

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