Interview With CCDS Swim Coach Nat Tracey-Miller

Kellan Raterman, Sports Co-Editor '23

Before the swimmers head off for state this week, I sat down with Coach Tracey-Miller to ask him some general questions about his time coaching and some specifics on the season.  

What have been some highlights from this season?

Coach Tracey-Miller: I would say really just getting a very new and young group together. Half the team is freshmen. 

We have three new freshmen club swimmers and a big group who came up from the middle school team and they are really going to be the story of the next four years.

This has a chance to be a really dominant crew who could take down most if not all of the records which have been set. Weichu Wang has already taken down the breaststroke record and is looking to take down a couple more hopefully in the weeks to come.

It’s just been really thrilling to have this new group gel and figure out how to work together and hopefully go pretty deep into February. 

What is different about coaching swimming compared to cross country and why did you decide to coach swimming?

Coach Tracey-Miller: It’s really hard not to be doing the workout right? It has always been one of the things that gives you whiplash going from one season to the next.

I always tell my cross country runners that whether or not I am actually going to run all of it with them, I will never make them run anything that I wouldn’t myself. In swimming, I’m making them swim things I wouldn’t swim myself all the time.

This is my seventh year with the program and I started [coaching] my first year at Country Day.  When the pool was down for renovation, they needed an assistant coach and it didn’t have to be someone who knew about swimming and the Athletic Director at the time approached me and asked if I wanted to do it and I said, “sure”.  I have learned a ton in that time.

My colleague, Coach Westhoven, is the one who is particularly focused on training and technique and I do a lot more of the logistics and organizing. But it’s just kinda been amazing over the last seven years working with some of the best swimmers the school has ever had, learning as much as I have about swimming and how it works and I really love the statistical end of it.

I have a huge database with all of our swimming statistics for the last seven years and trying to figure out the best relays and the best combinations of kids for scoring points is really satisfying.

How has the postseason gone so far and what are your thoughts about state?

Coach Tracey-Miller: It’s gone extremely well. We were certainly hoping to bring a boy’s relay up with us as well and this year just had a particularly tight cut time. But the girl’s 200 relay did something truly incredible. They’ve dropped over five seconds combined to qualify in and they have an excellent seed place.

They’re seeded 17th in the state going in. Caroline Ramirez had incredible swims, Delaney Gorman was dominant in her butterfly, and Weichu Wang had two absolutely spectacular qualifying swims, including setting a new record in the 200 IM.

We have a really strong group going up this year but we also are graduating some seniors and that’s hard but we’ve got a really strong young team who I think is gonna keep going back to Canton year after year here.