Inside with Brett Hawke: Maggie MacNeil

By Fitter and Faster Staff

Maggie MacNeil, the 2019 World Champion in the Women’s 100 Butterfly stops in for a chat.

Maggie shot to stardom by defeating Sarah Sjostrom (and the rest of the world) in the 100 Fly last year. If you listen closely you can hear Maggie say to Sarah, “I look up to you so much. Oh my God!”, as they embrace.

Who is Maggie MacNeil and how did you get into swimming?
London Ontario Canada. Excel Swim Lessons.
Played the violin and clarinet growing up. Her Dad is a drama teacher. Mom is a physician. Maggie wants to be a doctor or lawyer.
Growing up she swam every event. She didn’t specify into butterfly until much later in her late teens.
Liz Moskal. Donna Moskal. Andrew Craven. London Aquatic Club.
Were you a high ranked recruit?
What do you do well in your races? She has a list of things to improve upon.
Rick Bishop.
Did you think you could get on the podium last year? “Never expected to win.” What contributed to that big time drop?
Having the right amount of muscle and fat. “I haven’t mastered that yet.”
Out of the pool. 3 lifts per week after a power practice.

2019 World Championships:
Maggie’s first big international meet.
Prelims, Semis, and Finals she was next to Sarah Sjostrom each time.
5 foot 6 and 3/4 inches tall.
Fastest 50 split in that 100. First meet she ever did Semis.
95% in Prelims. Thought Semis was a perfect swim. Didn’t know she had a 55 in the tank.
What’s the ready room like?
Mentality switched.
What’s your breathing pattern in the 100 Fly? Do you have kick counts?
The finish was terrible. Glided 2 meters.
“I couldn’t actually see my time.” Emma McKeon told me I went 55.

“It’s whoever brings it on that day.” – Maggie MacNeil

How are you improving now?
How do you improve your underwaters?
11.6 SCM underwater kick.
Being under water.
And much more!