Four-time Olympic gold medalist Janet Evans, who hasn’t competed as a swimmer since the 1996 Atlanta games, is back in the pool. The 40-year-old mother of two swam at the 2012 Olympic trials Tuesday (June 26) in the qualifying heats for the 400m Freestyle.
Unfortunately, she did not advance to the semi-finals, but that wasn’t really the point. Evans told NBC’s Andrea Kremer after the race that she just wanted to keep swimming because it’s part of her soul.
“I was talking to my husband about it. Before, when I swam at the trials, I knew I was going to be first or second … I swam with a purpose. Just swimming to swim … it’s a different mindset,” says Evans.
And even though her time of 4:21:49 in the 400m Free was only good for 80th place, she still received a standing ovation upon exiting the pool. Evans swims again Saturday, June 30 in the women’s 800m Freestyle, the event for which she won two gold medals, at the 1988 and 1992 Olympics. She says she hopes to do better in the 800m.