Local Olympic hopeful to take on Michael Phelps this week

OMAHA, Neb. - This is the week athletes will compete for a spot in the 2012 Olympic games.
           
Several hopefuls are from the Kansas City area but there are two who coaches say have a real chance to make it.

However, one has to take on the world famous 14-time gold medalist Michael Phelps at the Olympic trials
to get to the games.

Bobby Bollier from Mission Hills and Shannon Vreeland of Overland Park are two swimmers so phenomenally great at what they do, many in the world of swimming believe they have a real chance at going for a medal in London.

Bollier's specialty? The 200 butterfly.
         
That just so happens to be the Phelps' specialty too.

 But Bollier said from his dorm room, "I'm confident I can go a best time .. I will be on my A game."

The U.S. takes two athletes in each swimming event.
       
Vreeland, now swimming at the University of Georgia, said her best chance is the 200 freestyle and 800 free relay.
        
She has trained with Phelps.

She said he works hard, "Where he got is not by chance."

Vreeland, a graduate of Blue Valley West high school,  said she never took swimming lessons as a kid. She just loved to swim.
 
Vreeland said, "I always loved the water. I was always was the first one in and lasted until I was freezing and turned blue. My mom would make me get out."

Both of the former Blazers swimmers have a lot of similarities. Both are disciplined to chase the Olympic dream through own passion.

Both are readers, both are smart.

Bollier just graduated from Stanford University in mechanical engineering.

And he said forget about rock and roll: "I started liking Wagner Operas a few years ago."

He knows five languages.

Both swimmers said they are quiet but competitive.

Vreeland said she already has one up on her friend.

"Bobby's 6 foot tall and I'm 6 foot 1 and a half. So, I'm taller."

Both agreed no matter what happens, trying their best will make them winners this week.

Bollier is ranked third in the nation in the 200 butterfly.
     
Vreeland is ranked fifth in the 200 freestyle.
     
The Olympic trials in swimming kick off Monday, July 25 in Omaha, Nebraska.

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