November 28, 2007

Newman’s Leadership Key for M. Swimming

Print More

Junior co-captain and Montreal native Wes Newman has made quite an impact on the men’s swimming team and has been a competitive performer for the Red throughout his career.
“I began swimming when I was five with a small club team in the city I live in back home,” Newman said. “I wasn’t necessarily the fastest kid when I was younger, but I have improved pretty consistently to get where I am today. I was also kind of a fat kid so once I lost the weight I guess I became more hydrodynamic.”
Wes’ older brother, Brad, also swam for Cornell and the brothers often competed with each other in some of the same events.
“My brother and I began swimming at the same time, and as we got better we had to change to a larger team. There I met the coach that I still have today when I go back home, named Marc Beaudry. I would say that Marc had a huge impact on my swimming career since I improved an enormous amount under his coaching.”
Always ready to share his success with those who have helped to improve and shape his swimming career, Wes expressed his gratitude for coaches and family alike.
“Now, at Cornell, I have a great relationship with coach [Joe Lucia] and he also communicates with Marc,” Newman said. “It is great that they get along so well that we are all on the same page with training when I go back and forth from Montreal to school.”
As a freshman for Cornell, Wes immediately proved himself as a strong performer. In his debut home meet for Cornell, Wes beat out his older brother Brad in the 200 back.
“My parents are also amazing when it comes to swimming,” Newman said. “I can’t remember a time when they have ever missed a swim meet. They drive from Montreal to all the schools in our conference to watch meets, and some of those trips aren’t small ones. They often bring Gatorade from back home which a lot of the guys on the team get a kick out of since the labels are all in French.”
As a sophomore, Newman competed at the NCAA Swimming and Diving championships along with two seniors on the team, Mike Smit and Dave McKechnie. Similarly, Newman had two top-8 finishes and another four consolation final appearances at the Canadian Bell Grand Prix.
This year, as his teammates will attest, Wes continues to be a powerful force and a qualified leader. Wes has experience in a wide range of events and has proven himself to be a solid and versatile swimmer. Over his time at Cornell, Wes has competed in the 1000 and 500 yard free, 100 and 200 free, 400 free relay, 100 and 200 fly, 200 back, 200 and 400 medley relay, to mention a few. Not only is he competitive in free, back and butterfly, but he also strives to compete in different distances.
“As a captain, Wes is always poised and in control of any situation,” said junior Jackson Wang. “He motivates you without being overbearing; he definitely leads by example.”
Wes has a straightforward approach to the sport, and the team benefits from his outlook. His dedication is evident and his commitment is emulated.
“As far as preparing for swimming goes, I’d say that the main thing I believe in is good training habits,” Newman said. “Always doing little things right in practice eventually pays off in meets. At meets it is usually pretty easy to get motivated since you owe it to yourself to give it your best shot after all the hard work you’ve put in. I doubt anyone on our team trains 20 hours a week to have a mediocre performance.”
His Canadian teammate, Wang, praised Newman’s performance on the team and his continued, steady improvement.
“He’s consistently been a solid competitor,” Wang said. “And if nothing else, he proves that French Canadians aren’t all that bad.”