Olympic Record Olympic Record: Redemption In The Water For Team GB First Black Female Olympic Swimmer

Olympic Record Olympic Record: Redemption In The Water For Team GB First Black Female Olympic Swimmer

Updated on July 27, 2022 16:54 PM by Ava Sara

Tokyo Olympics – The Women’s 10Km Marathon Swim Competition

Competing in the women's 10km marathon swim at the Tokyo Olympics in August 2021, the 24-year-old became the first Black female swimmer to represent Team GB at an Olympic Games.

Only two Black swimmers had represented Britain at the Games before Dearing: Kevin Burns swam at the 1976 Olympics in Montreal, and Paul Marshall won bronze in Moscow four years later.

It is something she never thought she would be or would achieve, Dearing told CNN Sport.

GB’s Incredible Olympic Games

Going to the Olympic Games is incredible, and I'm honored to be one of a few select people who have ever represented GB at an Olympics.

Regardless of the result, she had written herself into the history books the moment she dove into the waters of the Odaiba Marine Park. However, for Dearing, this was precisely the issue; the result was everything.

Having fallen away from the leading pack early on, Dearing finished 19th as Brazil's Marcela Cunha took gold. I'm pretty broken, she told reporters after the race. When CNN speaks with her four months later, the pain is still raw.

It wasn't what Dearing anticipated or expected of me, and I was disappointed by it, Dearing said.

It's always going to sit with me, and I think there's nothing wrong with that. That's the passion I have for wanting to be who I am, and I want to be one of the best athletes in the world.

Dearing Lifetime Reflection And Hurting Moment

Having that result kind of end up reflecting on my lifetime of work is what's hurt me at the moment.

Months into intensive training, for now, Dearing's focus is on the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, a literal home Games for Dearing, born and raised in the West Midlands city.

Yet, given her disappointment, it is perhaps unsurprising that she has already set her sights on the Paris Olympics in 2024, with qualifications set to take place a year before the Games.

If the "fuel for the fire" stoked by the hurt of Tokyo weren't enough, Dearing would arrive in Paris without the added weight of being a first-time Olympian, a weight she admits she didn't fully appreciate at the time.

Dearing didn't give it as much thought as I think I should have, Dearing said. She thought, 'I'm racing against the same women that I always race against how different the Games will be?' And they were.

It was exciting and impressive but also incredibly terrifying. Having that knowledge of all those emotions and everything that's going on will only make my mind frame and my position stronger for Paris.

On top of that, there is the potential boost of having fans, friends, and family present. Having debuted at a Games unlike any other in history run without fans due to the pandemic, Dearing will embrace a much more convenient experience in the French capital should she qualify.

She said she could experience the Games as they were in the past, have fans, and go live.

She has only ever had someone come and watch me once at a competition abroad, so I'm used to no one being there for me, but Paris would be an excellent opportunity to get friends and family out and get everyone having a good time.

Hopefully, Dearing swims well, has a perfect race, and then has a big celebration at the end; it is all part of the enjoyment of the Sport.

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