Ryan Glavey

Sports Editor

 

After years of hard work and dedication a Keene native is on the cusp of achieving her dream of competing in the 2012 London Olympic Games.

Eva Fabian, 18, has trained for most of her life in Keene, N.H. to attain the status of a world-class swimmer.

Fabian won a gold medal at the 2010 World Cup in Argentina and a silver medal at the 2011 Pan-Pacific Games.

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Fabian was accepted to Yale University, but deferred this year to focus on making the 2012 Summer Games.

Fabian will have her last chance to qualify for the London games at the 2012 Open Water National Championships on April 27, 2012.

“It would be great to make the Olympics,” Fabian said. “It’s what I’ve been working toward, and it’d be thanks to all the great coaches who helped me along the way.”

Fabian will have to finish in the top two at the U.S. nationals, where she will then head to Portugal.

There she will have to be the first American to finish in the top nine in the FINA Olympic Marathon Swim Qualifier 2012 on June 9, 2012, to qualify for the 2012 summer games.

Fabian has been on the U.S. swim team since she was 13 after showing a lot of promise in the water.

Fabian said she really wanted to pursue swimming full-time after watching the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games.

Jack Fabian, Eva’s father and Keene State College swimming and diving coach, said the U.S. swim team has special training camps for young swimmers who show potential.

He said Eva was invited to the camp during the summer of 2007, after her performance at the 2007 U.S. national championships.

“She finished in the top three in her age group at U.S. nationals,” Fabian said. “So she was on the team before they invited her to the camp.”

Fabian said Eva started swimming competitively when she was six-years-old.

Fabian said he knew she had true talent when she was eight-years-old and was winning overall in New England meets and ranking in the top 10 in her age group.

Fabian said Eva competed in her first open water race when she was 12, and made the U.S. swim team the next year. Fabian said she trains in Keene, at the KSC facilities, most of the year with her father coaching her.

“We use the pool for the speed she’ll need at the end of the race and sometimes move the buoys around to set up continuous swim circuits,” Fabian said.

KSC sophomore swimmer and three-time all-American Drew Ledwith said he typically trains with Eva during the year.

Ledwith is from Keene, N.H. and said he has known Fabian for about four years.

“When I first came here she was a lot faster than me and I couldn’t keep up, especially in distance events,” Ledwith said. “And she helped push me.”

Ledwith said he has trained with Fabian for a couple years now, and the two have benefitted from training together.

“Now I’m faster than her and I can push her to be better, so it’s kind of changed,” Ledwith said.

Ledwith has a specialty in the 1,650 yard freestyle swim, but Ledwith made the U.S. junior national team for open water, and is starting to be pulled toward open water swimming.

“It’s definitely where my focus is now,” Ledwith said, “and it’s mainly because Jack [Coach Fabian] and Eva are so into it.”

Ledwith said more than anything he has been impressed by Fabian’s drive, determination, and incredible focus on her goal.

Fabian will be attending Yale University full-time for the fall 2012 semester and competing on the swim team there.

 

Ryan Glavey can be contacted at rglavey@keene-equinox.com

 

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