ST. JOHN’S — No matter what life brings her way, it appears Katarina Roxon is eager to embrace it and make the most of it.
Roxon, who had a fifth-place finish in the 100-metre breaststroke for Team Canada at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, is the newest member of the Memorial University of Newfoundland Sea-Hawks swim team in the Atlantic University Sport.
Roxon, a Kippens native who was born with her left arm missing below the elbow, is engaged in general studies in her first year of college life. She has only been around the team for a couple of weeks, but she has been really impressed with the skillset of the group of swimmers assembled for this season.
A true competitor, Roxon loves being challenged to push herself to reach the pinnacle of success in everything that comes her way. She isn’t shy about admitting the program requires a lot of hard work and her teammates are really strong and fast athletes.
She’s in no way intimidated or discouraged by that realization, however. Bring it on, she says.
“I’m actually loving it because it just makes me want to push myself even harder to be as fast as them and faster than them,” Roxon said from St. John’s earlier this week.
“They’re all able-bodied swimmers and most of them are faster than me, so I’m looking up to them now,” she said.
“I’m seeing how they’re swimming and I’m trying to go as fast as them so it really helps me and pushes me even harder.”
The Sea-Hawks will be on the road this weekend to compete in an AUS swim meet in Halifax, but Roxon won’t be among those selected to travel to the event. She’s the new kid on the block and has to punch some time in the pool before she feels she’s ready for such a challenge.
“Hopefully, as I get faster and I improve that I go for the next AUS competition,” she said.
Roxon will also be training hard to earn a berth in her third World IPC Swim Championships, the 2013 event which will be hosted by a Canadian city in April that is yet to be determined. She will be participating in a Can-Am swimming event in Minneapolis, Minn. in April and that event is serving as a trial event for the formation of Canada’s host squad for the 2013 World IPC Championships.
She is settling in nicely at MUN. And, it’s pretty easy to understand what keeps her occupied all week.
“I like my courses, I like my professors they’re really good,” she said. “Just doing a lot of studying now and swimming, that’s about it.”