Published Thursday 03 July 2014

The Swimming Team for Glasgow 2014 has been announced and Lauren Boyle, Sophie Pascoe, Nikita Howarth, Ewan Jackson, Steven Kent, Dylan Dunlop-Barrett and Emma Robinson talk to us about what it means to be selected to represent New Zealand.

1. How does wearing the Silver Fern give you strength?

Lauren: It's an honor to represent my country and with that comes wearing the silver fern. I feel a passion to represent my country as best I can.

Sophie: The fern is a label of pride when representing your country. It gives you strength and power, passion, resilience to hard work and create a champion.

Nikita: It makes me feel like part of the team.

Ewan: I draw upon strength from the silver fern as it gives me motivation representing my country and reminds me of what it's all about.

Steven: The silver fern gives me strength because I think about all athletes in sport who wear it which is only a select amount, and I want to respect who I am wearing it for and the people who have worn it before me.

Dylan: Knowing that all of New Zealand is behind us athletes

Emma: Wearing the Silver Fern gives me strength as it is a part of every Kiwi, so when wearing the Silver Fern you know you have the support of every single Kiwi.

2. What does representing New Zealand mean for you?

Lauren: Representing NZ is an honor and privilege. It's special coming from a smaller country and making it onto the world stage. I don't take that opportunity for granted. 

Sophie: Representing NZ is a proud moment every time you step out into the arena. Its gives you the thrill and a rush of adrenaline to know that you are not only racing for yourself but for your country.

Nikita: It gives me an opportunity to make my country proud.

Ewan: It means a lot as it's representing not only your family and friends but also a whole nation who prides themselves on sporting excellence. 

Steven: It’s an honour to represent NZ - gives me that boost in training and racing when I think about who I am representing  a great country! A great sport! My club! My family and Myself

Dylan: A childhood dream, it reminds me of the people who I used to look up to.

Emma: For me representing New Zealand means that I get to show everyone how much work I put into swimming, it also means I get to make my country and family proud.

3. What are 3 attributes that every swimmer needs?

Lauren: Swimmers need to love the water, have a hunger for hard work and be able to wake up early consistently! 

Ewan: Good shower chat, barista skills and a good imagination.

Steven: Accountability, Pride and Heart, also a favourite pair of togs haha 

Dylan: Work ethic, patience, tenacity

Emma: Dedication, fight, motivation

4. How did you get into the sport?

Lauren: I got into swimming while I was young at the Tom Johnson learn to swim school at the Big Top swimming pool in Henderson now called the West Wave. I always loved the water.

Sophie: I started swimming when I was 7 years old at school. I went into a swim club after being pulled out of the pool by my current coach Roly Crichton and Paralympian Graham Condon who thought I had talent to potentially represent my country. And I have been training and racing ever since.

Nikita: I started swimming at the Cambridge Club (where my older sister Rhiannon) swam then Malcolm Humm (PNZ) spotted me at the New Plymouth Independence games and it took off from there.

Ewan: Got sick of sitting on the side of the pool while my sister swum.

Steven: I am youngest of four brothers and a son of two great parents who swam! Didn’t have an option not to swim haha (joking) but loved the water so have enjoyed it my whole life!

Dylan: Growing up around the beach, followed my older sisters into the sport.

Emma: I started learn to swim and surf life saving at a young age, and from there I moved to Capital, however I didn't start competitively swimming until l was 12.

5. Your inspiration?

Sohie: "I often wonder why I put myself through the daily sacrifices of training, but then I remember the end result is worth the physical and emotional pain, not many people in the world can claim they are a world champion"

Lauren: ""Energy and persistence conquer all things"

Nikita: “You’ve got to chase your dreams, because they won’t chase you” 

Ewan: "Greatness is a habit"

Steven: "Just get it done"

Dylan: "Whether you succeed or fail, it was you, nobody else"

Emma: "When you are feeling the least confident, that’s when you have to act the most confident."