Chris Duenas, Guam Olympic Athlete, Competes in Beijing


 

Chris Duenas

Chris Duenas

 

Only 16 years old and hailing from an island 32 miles long and at its widest point 8 miles wide,  Guam Olympian, Chris Duenas, competed in the Men’s 100 meter Freestyle swimming Heat 3 round competition against six other athletes. This was a dream not only for himself, but as he has always referred to in countless interviews before, using the pronoun “we” ,  a dream for his teammates and for the people of Guam.

Chris came in 7 out of 7.  I believe I speak for those of us who are fans of his and who have ties to Guam, we cannot be any prouder of him.  There is a lump in my throat to know that a fellow kinsman from Guam has earned the right to compete on the Olympic stage.  That is a honor in itself, especially knowing that the Olympics is a platform that is used to promote peace and goodwill among the nations.

Chris Duenas

Chris Duenas

Guam’s own history has the hard lessons of war and colonial conquest so the Olympics is more than just a sporting event for our people, it is an affirmation that people of Guam have survived and are still contributors to this great planet of ours.

Olympian Chris Duenas

Olympian Chris Duenas

Chris,  we know that this is just the beginning of your life and career. Cherish this experience. Thanks for making Guam proud. And you know, there is always the next Olympics :-).

Esta,

Tasi

SwimmingMen’s 100-Meter Freestyle

Men’s 100m Free Qualification – Heat 3

Tue Aug 12 6:38am EDT

Swimming – Men’s 100m Free Qualification – Heat 3
Rank Country Athlete Final
1 Flag of IND Virdhawal Khade 50.07
2 Flag of LAT Romans Miloslavskis 50.40
3 Flag of BAR Terrence Haynes 50.50
4 Flag ofKAZ Alexandr Sklyar 51.24
5 Flag ofKOR Namgyun Lim 51.80
6 Flag ofUZB Petr Romashkin 51.83
7 Flag of GUM Christopher Duenas 52.64

 

Guam's Christopher Duenas after he finished last in his heat of the men's 100-meter freestyle preliminaries Tuesday at the National Aquatics Center at the Beijing Olympic games. (Gannett News Service)

Aiming for London: Guam

Duenas: ‘This is just the beginning’

By Jojo Santo Tomas • Pacific Daily News • August 13, 2008

Chris Duenas had a good start and was neck and neck with the field for the first 35 meters of the 100m freestyle swim last night at the National Aquatic Center in the Beijing Olympics. He tapped the first wall at 25.45 seconds, slowest of the seven in his heat. Not where he wanted to be, but not terrible. Virdhawal Khade of India had fastest split at 23.95.

“It could have been better or worse, I’m just happy I got in that fast,” Duenas said.

With 20 yards left, his race changed. Duenas ended up finishing seventh with a time of 52.64, falling short of his personal record of 52.28. Khade won the heat with a time of 50.07.

“He hit what we call a wall, his arms felt like lead,” said his coach Ed Ching. “He got the experience of swimming with champions the best in the world… and he even got drug tested! That’s cool! He got the whole Olympic experience.”

Duenas plans to spend his following days cheering on his teammates as they did for him. The rest of Team Guam was in the stands waving the Guam flag and screaming their support.

“Just like anything else, you learn from what you did before, you work harder and you get better,” Duenas said. “Just like Michael Phelps says, listen to your coach, that’s one of the things I learned here.”

London in plans

Duenas is also already looking forward to the 2012 Games in London, which he said has been in his sights for two years already.

“This is not the end,” Duenas said. “This is just the beginning, a new beginning actually. One of my goals four years ago was just coming to the Olympics. I achieved one of them, so I’m pretty happy with that.”

 

 

 

 

 

Pre-Olympics Interview:

4 thoughts on “Chris Duenas, Guam Olympic Athlete, Competes in Beijing

  1. Hey chris,

    Well,my names Derek Smith,from guam,im 15 turning 16,i love swimming and softball.well like this is so RANDOM,ahhah,your so freaken hot…..
    Like reals.Hope you do good in beijing i have faith in you;i mean everyone does on guam.you’ll do fine.Come home with gold..just kidding,but atleast try your best.

    Sincerely,

    Derek Smith.

  2. I hope that Chris does not hang his head in disappointment over his placement in his event. If he does he will not see all of his islander families raising their heads is pride over his historic accomplishments.

    We are all proud to have had him represent our island in this most prestigious world sporting venue. Guam is unspeakably blessed to have a young man of integrity and perseverance represent us and our tiny but now famous island.
    Keep on Chris and GO GUAM!!!

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