Uploaded on June 15, 2012 by jeff
THIS is the final weekend for swimmers around the world to go for Olympic qualifying times in the hopes of being added to their country's Olympic rosters. FINA has set Monday as the drop-dead date for swimmers to achieve either the A or B cuts in individual events. A few events are taking place outside the U.S. this weekend, including the Sette Colli meet in Rome, where some of the top Olympic-caliber athletes are getting in another opportunity to fine-tune race strategy.
A great battle took place in the men's 100 back between Japan's Ryosuke Irie and France's Camille Lacourt, with Irie taking the win in 53.71 over Lacourt's 53.77. These are the two fastest 100 backstrokers in the world this year, and this was the first time the two have raced each other in 2012.
Italy's Luca Marin shot up the world rankings today in the 400 IM with a 4:12.04. Marin's best time of the year had been a 4:15.69 from one of the Mare Nostrum meets last week. Marin was fifth in this event at the 2008 Olympics.
Chad Le Clos has been very consistent in his 200 butterfly races, swimming in the 1:55 range three times in the past two months. He made it number four today with a 1:55.87 to win in Italy by two seconds, his fourth-fastest swim of the year. The South African couldn't pull off the tough double today, finishing fourth in the 400 IM.
Aya Terakawa, who set a Japanese national record in the 100 back a few weeks ago with a 59.08, got close to that today with a 59.42. Anastasia Zueva, who so far is the only person under 59 this year, was second with a 1:00.35.
Ranomi Kromowidjojo cemented her status as the fastest 100 freestyler in the world with a 53.09 today. She's gone a 52.75 already this year.
Check swimmingworld.com for a full recap of today's swimming, as well as the final day of competition tomorrow.
Earlier today, British Swimming announced that Daniel Sliwinski will have shoulder surgery next week and therefore will not be able to swim the 100 breast at the Olympics. Sliwinski won the 100 breast at the March Olympic Trials in 1:00;09, which at the time was the fast time in the world but is now the seventh-fastest. The open roster spot can still be filled at next week's nationals, which is a second chance for swimmers to make the squad in 11 other events. Some of those already on the team will use the meet as training, and possibly pull someone along to a FINA A time.
Back here in the States, the Paralympians have started their Olympic Trials in North Dakota with lots of records falling on the first day. Jessica Long reset three of her world records in the 400 free and 100 breast yesterday. In the 400 free, she cut about eight tenths off her world standard in the S8 division, and almost three seconds in the 100 breast in the SB7 division. On her way to that 100 breast record, she broke her own 50 breast world record by a little more than a second with a 42.07. Victoria Arlen also set a world record in the 400 free, with her time of 5:24.46 breaking Eleanor Simmonds' record of 5:25.50.
Seven other swimmers set American records: Rudy Garcia-Tolson in the men's SB7 100 breast, Dalton Herendeen in the SB8 100 breast, Kayla Wheeler in the SB1 50 breast as well as Alyssa Gialamas in the S5 200 freestyle, Rebecca Meyers in the 400 free in the S13 division, Ian Silverman in the S10 400 free division, Colleen Young in the SB13 100 breast.
The U.S. Olympic diving trials begins tomorrow in Seattle with prelim and semifinal rounds in synchronized diving. The process for selecting the Olympic team this year is much simpler than it was in 2008. Four years ago, divers had to get a certain place at the Trials, then perform again for a committee at a separate diving meet. That committee then determined the divers who would be on the Olympic roster. This year, all the divers have to do is place in the top two, and they're in. American divers haven't won an Olympic medal since 2000, when Laura Wilkinson won gold on the platform.
USA Swimming reversed its decision yesterday regarding time trials at the Olympic Trials. Now, time trials will be offered for three days in Omaha: June 27 and 28, and July 2. Time trials on the 27th and 28th will last about 90 minutes, with the session on July 2, the only day of the meet with no prelims, lasting more than two hours.