The USA’s three-time Paralympic champion McKenzie Coan is looking to June’s World Para Swimming World Series in Indianapolis as a stepping stone to her main goal for the year: the Mexico 2017 World Championships.
The 20-year-old is in her junior year of college and has been preparing to apply to law school, which is why she has not yet participated in any competition this year.
“I haven’t been able to make the other World Series meets work with my busy academic schedule. So I’m really excited to go to my first meet and I’m even more excited that it will be on home soil!,” said Coan.
“I think anytime that you get the opportunity to host an international event in your home country, there is always lot of pride. I also think it makes you swim even faster!
“With Indianapolis being one of my first big meets back since the Rio Games, I would really like to put forth a strong showing and get some good racing in with my fellow competitors. I think the meet will be a great warm up for the rest of the summer.”
Despite her excitement about competing on home soil, Coan has her sights set on Mexico 2017, the biggest Para swimming competition outside of the Paralympic Games.
It will be her second World Championships after competing at Glasgow 2015, where she claimed silver in the women’s 4x100m freestyle relay 34pts.
“I’m really excited heading into this year’s Worlds,” she said. “I never really took a break from training after Rio as I went straight back to start my junior year of college and to swim with the college team.
“I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things with the first big international competition post-Rio and see where I’m at in terms of my training. I think the first Worlds of a new quad always provides a sense of excitement and renewed energy as we start to take the next steps towards Tokyo 2020.
“Plus, there is always new and exciting talent developing so I’m excited to see some fast swimming.”
In Rio, Coan produced one of the best swimming performances at the Games, winning three gold and one silver medals.
“Rio was incredibly exciting and I’m hoping to continue the success that I had at the Games, in Mexico,” she said.
“My ultimate goal for the Worlds is to get back on the podium and have a strong showing to build up confidence going into this new quad. Being a world champion would be amazing so I'm really motivated and excited to see how things go this summer.”
The fourth stage of the World Para Swimming World Series will take in Indianapolis, USA, from 9-11 June.
The World Para Swimming Championships will take place in Mexico City, from 30 September-6 October.