DERBY – Fourteen-year-old Vera Rivard has been selected as one of Vermont Sports Magazine’s 2018 Athletes of the Year.
Vera and her family live in Springfield, NH and have a summer camp in Derby with access to Lake Memphremagog, where she trains.
During the winter she swims with Upper Valley Aquatic Club.
In July of 2018, Vera became the youngest swimmer, male or female, to swim the 25-mile length of Lake Memphremagog, which she did in 16 hours and 24 minutes.
Just as impressive, she did so against fierce headwinds during the first 15 miles, which knocked five other experienced swimmers out of the water, leaving her among only two who finished in Magog.
In August of 2018, she also completed the NEK Swim Week, 8 Lakes over the course of 9 days, double-crossing Lac Massawippi and Willoughby, for a total of 60 miles on all eight lakes.
At the beginning of the year, in February of 2018, she became the youngest swimmer to participate in the Memphremagog Winter Swim Festival, swimming each and every event from the 25-meter hat competition to the 200-meter freestyle.
This year, she leads a group of four youth swimmers participating in the festival, including her eleven-year-old sister Margaret.
She started her open water swimming in 2014, when she was 10, with a 1-mile swim at Kingdom Swim and a 3-mile swim at Caspian.
She has grown her distances each year since then.
While she was swimming Kingdom Swim’s 10-mile course in 2016 around the islands of Derby Bay, she and her mother fell in love with the lake, and her family bought a summer camp in Derby, with access to Lake Memphremagog.Are you on Instagram? Cool. So are we. CLICK HERE to follow us for a behind the scenes look at Newport Dispatch.