Many recognize the island of Saint Lucia for its mountainous countryside and volcanic ringed beaches. As for the University of Tampa, only one thing comes to mind when they think of Saint Lucia: swimming phenomenon Jordan Augier.
The two-time St. Lucia National Swimmer of The Year is in the midst of preparing for the Sunshine State Conference(SSC) Championship that will be held in Orlando on Feb. 19-22. With much of the spotlight on the six-foot-four -inch junior, spectators wait anxiously to see which school record Augier will shatter next.
After he was crowned in the 2013-14 season as a CSCAA All-American, Augier set multiple school benchmarks for the Spartans at last year’s SSC Championship meet, competing in what he declares to be his “favorite” strokes: the 100 freestyle and 100 backstroke.
This year, Augier will compete yet again in those two categories along with a variety of relays, including the 200 and 400 medleys and freestyle relay.
Despite a lingering right knee injury, Augier is learning to deal with it; his hopes of returning to the NCAA National Championship meets in Indianapolis, Indiana remain high.
“In order to continue my success in the year, I have been treating my injury as best as possible, staying healthy and keeping a positive attitude day in and day out,”Augier said.
Augier’s mentality is one reason why he was appointed the title of captain this season. His humble demeanor and will to compete are what his Spartan teammates and coaches admire most about him. Being such a decorated amateur swimmer, Augier credits most of his success to his coaches.
“My coaches are a huge influence on my swimming, especially their suggestions in practice. Training is 99 percent of your preparation and racing in meets is only 1 percent,” Augier said.
In fact, training is what Augier has done most of his life. Growing up surrounded by nothing but the Caribbean Sea, Augier’s parents made it mandatory for all his siblings to learn how to swim. Though this may have sparked his love for water at such a young age, it is not what keeps him going.
This summer he will attend his first ever Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada. Augier became the first St. Lucian to reach under a minute in the 100m backstroke and capture a silver medal in the 18 and over male category.
With his time of 59.46 seconds, he was able to qualify for the Pan Am on July 10-26, 2015. He surpassed his previous National Record set in the Central American and Caribbean Games (CCCAN) in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico in the summer of 2013.
After participating in the Pan Am this July, Augier will have a short turn-around, switching gears to the World Championships in Kazan, Russia. This will be Augier’s first ever appearance at these meets
The All-American remains confident that by paying close attention to proper technique and execution of his strokes during training, he will be able to clock faster times.
Maybe one day making his lifelong dream of representing St. Lucia in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil a reality.
But for now, Augier’s mind for the next month will be on bringing home a national title to UT, something he did not get to check off last year at Nationals in Geneva, Ohio.
Augier placed sixth in the final 400 free relay with the time of 2:59.30. This year, he and his teammates go into the meet focused and anxious looking to come out on top.
Candace Martino can be reached at email@example.com