Athlete of the Week: Dan Arteaga
Senior Dan Arteaga, co-captain of the men’s swim team, has been an important part of his No. 6 team’s success. In the Bears’ most recent meet, a 134-76 rout of the Principia College Panthers, Arteaga claimed first in the 200 freestyle—an event outside his specialty—and was part of a first-place 200 medley relay team. Arteaga is one of Student Life’s Athletes of the Week.
Student Life: How do you feel about your times so far?
Dan Arteaga: Overall, I definitely had a great first half of the season. Starting with the second or third meet, I had a meet at Mizzou, and did pretty well there. [My swims] were pretty consistent the entire first half. Right after training trip, I was really sore, really stiff. I didn’t have a great first two meets of 2010. But then the last meet, Principia, was actually a pretty good meet for me. I swam some events that I usually don’t swim, the 200 freestyle and 100 back, and actually did pretty well in the 200 freestyle at least. I was happy with that, and it was definitely a confidence booster. I do plan on going faster at conference in three and a half weeks.
SL: What goals do you have individually, and for your team, for the rest of the season?
DA: We want to get second place at conference. Our biggest competition right now is NYU and Carnegie Mellon. Emory has too much depth [and] is way too good. They pretty much automatically win. But we want to beat NYU, which has a lot of depth, a lot of guys. We also want to make a lot of relays for nationals, get a lot of guys going to nationals who have never gone before. Our goal is to be a top-five team. Individually, I want to at least get a ‘B’ cut in my three main events; the 100 freestyle, the 50 freestyle and the 100 butterfly, and I want to go best times in all of those events. I hope to score, at least get top 16 in all of those. I want to have very fast swims on relays at conference.
SL: Have any races in particular stood out to you this year?
DA: Definitely the 400 freestyle relay at Principia. David Chao had some amazing races…The one where he beat John Cook [of DePauw] in the 100 freestyle at our invite was a pretty good one. He also had two good 200 freestyle races, one at the beginning of the season at the DePauw Invite and his relay split in the 800 freestyle relay at the Wash. U. invite had an amazing time. My best swim so far was at Wheaton on the 400 freestyle relay, where I was the second leg and split a 45.8 and we had an overall time of 4:04.0. It was an exciting race all the way through the relay, and it concluded the meet on a high note for me.
SL: What is the most challenging part of practice for you?
DA: Honestly one of the most challenging parts is just getting in the water in the first place because it’s always so cold. It’s always so nice and comfortable outside on the deck, warm and relaxed, you don’t want to get in the water—sometimes, not all the time. Besides that, I’m a sprinter, so the longer sets we have, especially Mondays are sometimes a challenge for me because they’re just continuous and long and that’s not really my specialty. My specialty is just short, quick stuff. Wednesdays are always a challenge. It’s quick stuff—to go fast times and keep swimming throughout the entire set is fun though, too, just racing your teammates.