Farmington YMCA Stingrays swimmer Amy Pan won her first state championship at age 6, the same year she started competitive swimming.
“By the time I was 10, I started going for state records,” said Pan, now 12 and a 7th grader at Farmington STEAM Academy.
She’s still winning with the Farmington Family YMCA Stingrays. Last month, Pan broke team records in six events and made the YMCA’s National Cut in the 100 Backstroke, with a time of 58.18 seconds. She is only the second Stingray to top the national bar at age 12; the first was Olympian Katya Bachrouche, who now swims for Lebanon.
While swimming initially came easy – “I always liked playing around in the pool with my brother” – setting records has required a dedicated effort. Pan swims for more than two hours daily except on Saturdays and said the Stingrays and her coaches have become “like family”.
“Everyone is close and really good friends,” she said. “The coaches are really nice, and they’re reasonable. The parents are there to support everyone, not just their own kids.”
Pan said her older brother Andrew, who swims for Harrison High, also motivates her. They try to outdo each other’s times in the same event.
“It’s really motivating,” she said. “It keeps us both moving forward.”
While the Stingray coaches oversee physical training in and out of the pool, Pan said she gets much more from swimming for the team.
“It’s taught me a lot of life lessons, how to move on from mistakes and not to focus on one part of life, to be well-rounded,” she said.
Learn more about the Stingrays at farmingtonstingrays.org.