Swimming into Success: Jack Ailshire’s Story

Emilee Clay

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Jack Ailshire dove into his junior year with three varsity letters, breaking two record titles. At the beginning of the season, he broke the LSW 100 meter fly of 48.38 seconds and the Columbia Missouri Boys Invite 100m fly. Having swam since he was eight, Ailshire is a member of Empire, one of the highest-ranking swim teams in Kansas City.

Ailshire is currently ranked first in the state for both the 100m fly and 100m backstroke. “The people who influenced me the most I would say [are] my Mom and teammates, especially 2022 graduate Caleb Ellis who pushed me a lot in practice to become the best I can be,” Ailshire said.

 Ailshires Mom, Jennifer Ailshire, said she has supported Jack all along the way. “Jack has progressed both physically and technically as a swimmer. Most importantly he has continued to have fun with the sport. He has also been very fortunate to have excellent club coaches that support and challenge him to grow as an athlete, but also as a person.” 

Jack said that his mother has been his biggest motivator, being his former coach and role model. “I’m not sure I’d be where I am in life if it weren’t for swimming. I just hope I can pass on the impact it’s had on me, to the athletes I have the opportunity to coach,”Jennifer said.

Following in his Mom’s footsteps as a swimmer has motivated Ailshire to make his Mom proud by being the best he can be. 

Senior Leo Kurucz has swam with Ailshire for the last four years and together have become state champions making them a record-breaking team. The two push each other in everything they do, especially when it comes time to swim. Kurucz said, “We push each other every day in practice, racing every lap we swim even if we are supposed to be going easy. He definitely influences me every day to better myself and to work on improving things I never thought I could do before.” 

Ailshire’s next big goal is to make the Olympic Trials cut in the summer of 2024. The Olympic trials require time standards you must meet in order to compete against the best competitors in the nation. Whoever places top two in the national event will then move on to compete in the Olympics representing America . 

Ailshire said, “To make the Olympic trials cut would mean all my hard work has paid off and that I have reached my biggest goals.” 

Jennifer Ailshire said, “Jack is a much better swimmer than I ever was partly because of the technology and training that has been available to him, but also because he has been surrounded by coaches and teammates that have made him better as an athlete and as a person. He’s had high school and club coaches that have gone on to swim in college that took him under their wings and showed him what it takes to be great.”

Ailshires’ after highschool plans include continuing his swim career at what he hopes to be at a D1 school. Ailshire is currently interested in the Universities of Auburn, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio State, West Virginia, and Indiana keeping his mind entirely open to all opportunities. 

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