Aldrich breaks Alaskan records

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WALLA WALLA — Twenty events, 20 gold medals and 18 records set.

Those are the numbers put up by Walla Walla swimmer Suzy Aldrich at Senior Games competitions all over the Northwest in 2012.

Aldrich, 69, capped her dominating year with four golds and four records broken Sunday at the Alaska state Senior Games, winning the 50-yard backstroke, the 100 back, the 50 freestyle and the 200 free, which she swam as a backstroke.

And Aldrich didn’t just break the previous records, she crushed them.

In the 50 free, for example, she had a 41.24-second swim, taking more than eight seconds off the previous record of 49.53 set in 2011. In the 200 free she bested her own record set in 2011 of 3 minutes and 31.65 seconds by even more, swimming the event in 3:22.31.

Aldrich had never swam competitively before competing in the 2011 Eastern Washington Senior Games, where she first caught the competitive bug.

Aldrich, who practices at the Walla Walla YMCA, doesn’t have any more events on the schedule for this year, but is hoping to receive an invitation to the 2013 Summer National Senior Games in Cleveland. In the meantime, Aldrich has no plans to slow down her five-day-a-week workout routine.

“The (YMCA pool) will be closed for a maintenance for a week, I’ll take that off,” Aldrich said, “and then I will go back and broaden my base and continue my work on technique, mechanics and form.

“I can’t wait until I turn 70 so I can go into that new weight class and set new records all over again,” Aldrich said.

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