Local swimmer Cort Hoblemann attended the 2019 D and I Select Diversity Camp last month at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. He was one of only 48 athletes between the ages of 13-16 selected to attend the prestigious swim camp, an honor he did not take lightly.
“It felt really good,” Hoblemann said. “It was an honor to be chosen.”
Hobleman is 16 years old and is entering his junior year at Owensboro Catholic High School. He is an active member of both the Catholic high school swim team and Owensboro Health Park Marlins swim team.
Invitations to the camp were extended to underrepresented populations who met specific qualifying times at USA Swimming sanctioned events. Hoblemann was housed in a dorm for three days while he participated in pool training, motivational and education settings and team building activities.
“I didn’t really know what all we would be doing, but I did expect to learn about leadership in addition to swimming,” he said.
The experience far exceeded any expectations that he had.
“We would wake up and have a two-hour swim practice, then the classroom sessions, and then some free time,” Hoblemann said. “The instructors and other campers were great – the sessions taught us the importance of being a good teammate, how to be a good leader, and discussed several elements of diversity.”
The camp was the first step in the USA swimming progression, with the ultimate goal of carrying athletes forward to the junior national team. Hoblemann intends to remain persistent in his academic and swimming efforts moving forward.
“Right now I want to keep swimming and try to earn a scholarship to a small college or university,” Hoblemann said. “We will see what happens from there.”
Hoblemann spends upwards of five days per week in the pool, conducting two-and-a-half-hour workouts. In addition to training in the pool, he puts in countless hours of strength and conditioning training.
Cort’s parents, Chad and Karen, and his coach, Vali Preda played a significant role in his recent success.
“Vali has been coaching me for upwards of four years and he’s really helped me in the sport, especially with my technique,” Hoblemann said. “Mom and Dad have always been supportive of my efforts, making sure I get where I need to go.”