Mark Versfeld has experienced the highs and lows in his swimming career.
The high point was a double medal performance at the 1998 world
championships in Perth, Australia. He placed second in the 100 backstroke
and third in the 200 backstroke setting a Commonwealth record at the time.
However he has been unable to beat those times ever since. Last season he
struggled not winning a medal at either the Pan Am Games or the Pan Pacific
Championships. However his performances at the Olympic trials in June
showed he might be on the comeback trail.
"All the good times and bad times have been worth it in my swimming
career," said Versfeld, who missed the cut for the 1996 Olympic team. "All
you can do is try to enjoy the sport as much as possible. I always do my
best and take care of the things I can control."
Versfeld will also likely be part of the men's 4X100 medley relay. Canada
won medals in the event in every Olympics it entered from 1972 to 1992.
"We feel the tradition of the Canadian medleys doing well at the Olympics,"
he said. "When you have a Canadian swimmer for each stroke that can go
under the Canadian record and then you put them all together that should
promise a very fast time."
Versfeld moved to Vancouver in 1996, a decision he felt made him more
mature and independent. He grew up and learned to swim at the 25-metre
Centennial Pool in Fort McMurray. His mother swam the relay for the
Netherlands at the 1968 Olympics and now competes at major triathlon
Mark Versfeld, Fort McMurray, Alta., was seventh in heat, eliminated.
2000 Games Swimming Coverage