In the weeks leading up to the USMS Long Course Championships in Minnesota, Andy McPherson was feeling like he was a little off his game. “I just didn’t feel like I was firing on all cylinders,” he commented as he described his world record breaking performance at the championship meet in August. But as he touched the wall at the end of the 100m butterfly, Andy felt like he had something. However, when the race results were announced, there was no mention of his performance having broken any records. So Andy found DAM teammate Jenny Mohn and asked her to check the results against USMS and world records (he was too nervous to do this himself!) and sure enough, Jenny saw right away that Andy had not only broken the American record, but that he had broken the previous world record of 1:12.66 by 0.23 seconds with a time of 1:12.43! Jenny quickly went back to the meet announcer to correct the oversight. When she announced it to the group of 8 DAM swimmers assembled at the meet, they broke out in a spontaneous round of “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow,” hoisted him up on their shoulders, and paraded him around the pool deck like he was a conquering hero! Well, OK, the last bit didn’t actually happen, but the rest did, and Andy McPherson is now the current world record holder in the M70-75 100m butterfly.
Andy's early swimming career, from high school, to All-American at the University of Florida, to USMS All-American, is documented in his 2002 USMS profile. His involvement with DAM began immediately after he moved to Davis in 1990. He quickly became one of the leading swimmers on the team. “Andy has been a dominant force in DAM swimming for over a quarter century,” said Coach Stu when describing Andy’s impact on the DAM program.
Author's note: In looking over old editions of the Record Times (old DAM monthly newsletter), I was hard pressed to find one that didn’t mention Andy anywhere since he joined in 1990*. In fact, in the first one I opened (November 91), the very first announcement was that Andy and Susan Munn were being awarded “Outstanding Competitors” for the year.
Andy currently holds the USMS M70-74 records in two events: his world record 100 fly (LCM) and the 100 IM (SCY) which he did in 1:04.77 at the April 2017 USMS Spring National Championship meet. He holds 59 standing DAM SCY records, 28 LCM records and 30 SCM records. Overall, he holds 117 DAM records! You can read more about Andy's multilateral training program and a list of records and honors he's received in the recent Davis Enterprise Article (September 17, 2017) written by DAM swimmer Owen Yancher.
Aside from swimming, Andy recently retired from a 44 year career as an architect. Examples of some of the buildings he designed are Inderkum High School in Natomas, the KXTV Broadcast tower in Sacramento, and the Federal Courthouse, also in Sacramento. The most unusual project he worked on was to design a restaurant at a "clothing optional" resort. He remembers how sore his neck was from always averting his gaze!
In Andy’s 2002 USMS profile, he was asked his highlights from his masters swimming career. When asked to update that to 2017, he says that swimming the 100 free in 49s at age 49 remains a highlight. But now he adds to that his world record performance. Congratulations Andy!
* I finally found one - I couldn’t find Andy’s name anywhere in the July 2006 Record Times.