An Appetizer for United States Nationals

Olympic 200m free champ, American Allison Schmitt [Photo: Mike Comer/ProVisuals, courtesy of USA Swimming]

After months of build-up and the mixture of ho-hum competitions and intriguing tune-up events, the summer heats up with fervor when the United States National Championships get under way next week in Indianapolis. By the end of the five-day affair, we’ll have a much better view of the global scene ahead of world titles. A few pointers [Photo: Courtesy USA Swimming]

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After months of build-up and the mixture of ho-hum competitions and intriguing tune-up events, the summer heats up with fervor when the United States National Championships get under way next week in Indianapolis. By the end of the five-day affair, we’ll have a much better view of the global scene ahead of world titles. A few pointers [Photo: Courtesy USA Swimming]

Comments

beachmouse

Given the schedule in Barcelona, Ledecky can’t really swim the individual 200 free there (only the men’s 100 back between 1500 finals and 200 free finals) and I wouldn’t be surprised to see her put down a good prelims time in the 200 free and then scratch out if she’s already on the team in the 800 free at that point as expected. In all likliehood, her 1:56.9 from earlier this year is already good enough to get her on the finals squad in the 4×200 under the ‘anyone on the team can swim the relays’ American policy like we’ve seen with Phelps and Coughlin in the past.

aswimfan

I feel Barcelona will be to Ledecky what 1988 Seoul to Janet Evans: The coronation of a distance superstar.

I hope she breaks 800 free WR either in Indy or Barcelona.

Kat

The 400 free is going to be a corker with Schmitt, Sutton and Ledecky all potentially going sub 4.04. It’ll be even better in Barcelona with Muffat, Barratt, Palmer making up for the absence of Becky Adlington. Though it’s a shame Lauren Boyle isn’t having a brilliant season.

Craig Lord

Yes, great race on the cards. I think we’ll see Lauren Boyle in the picture in the distance events …

SwimFanFinland

This is little bit off topic but I began to wonder whether anyone has ever been able to win three successive freestyle events at same World Championships or the Olympic Games? With the current schedule it is, of course, more difficult in the Olympics.

It may happen in Barcelona if Sun Yang is going to swim all freestyle races from 200m to 1500m. It’s possible also for Ledecky. Obviously, her possible Achilles heel will be 400m due to a challenge especially from Muffat and Barratt. I cannot foresee anyone to challenge Ledecky in 800m or 1500m, which brings another thing to my mind. Why on earth Muffat doesn’t swim 800m free, the short course world record holder? Muffat would have also a possibility to achieve three successive crowns in freestyle events, from 200m to 800m. I cannot see her to win 100m as opposed to 800m. In the 800m free, I’m sure Muffat and Ledecky would have a furious duel lasting 8 minutes and being very exciting to follow. Now we have to settle for 4 minutes battle. 🙂

Craig Lord

Kate Ziegler stopped Laure Manaudou by 0.28sec in 2007; and Ian Thorpe is the one among men: 200, 400 and 800 champ at Fukuoka 2001

Lennart van Haaften

For completeness:

Hackett even surpassed Thorpe’s achievement with golds in the 400, 800, 1500 and a silver in the 200 meter in 2005. (Thorpe was 4th by 0.02s in the 100 in Fukuoka).
Hannah Stockbauer won the 400, 800 and 1500 in 2003. (Ledecky could repeat this in the same city)
Tim Shaw won the 200, 400 and 1500 in 1975 at age 17 when the 800 wasn’t on the program. (Sun may be able to win all four)

At the Olympics it has been done only once: Debbie Meyer won the 200, 400, 800 in 1968 aged 16 years and 2 months (Ledecky will be 2 months older in Barcelona). Van den Hoogenband was closest among men missing the 50m free by 0.05s in 2000. The 50-100-200 or 100-200-400 combinations are probably more difficult than distance combinations.

By the way, three or more individual golds in any combination of strokes in quite rare. Only two men did it at the Olympics: Spitz and Phelps (twice). They even won 4, 4 and 5. Eight women won 3 or more, most recently Inge de Bruijn in Sydney. At worlds, 5 men and 4 women achieved this.

SwimFanFinland

Oh, of course Thorpe has done it. I was a bit lazy about inspecting. Thanks.

Craig Lord

Yes – and not to forget the 5 solo golds to Krisztina Egerszegi (over 3 games, 1, 3, 1), the Hungarian the only woman ever to win that solo count of the ultimate prize

aswimfan

Lennart van Haaften,

Not only PVDH, but Biondi also did the 50-100-200 in Seoul: Gold, Gold, Bronze. So that’s already two male swimmers since 50 free was introduced in Seoul.

100-200-400 is much harder.

Ian Thorpe is the only male swimmer to have won medals in 100-200-400 in a single olympics (2004: bronze, gold, gold), while Shane Gould is the only female swimmer to have done it (1972: bronze, gold, gold – and by the way, Gould is still the only female swimmer to ever win 5 individual medals in a single olympics). Even at the height of their power, no Geman girls did the 100-200-400 medals.

aswimfan

to the owners of swimvortex, why can’t we create new paragraphs or spaces?

to make long comment without new paragraphs is just difficult to read.

Thanks!

aswimfan

Lennart Van Haaften,

I do think Thorpe’s achievements in 2001 Fukuoka far surpassed Hackett’s 2005 Montreal.

Not only Thorpe faced the top competitors in his events in 2001 Fukuoka (PVDH in 200 and Hackett in 400/800), but he also slaughtered the WRs in the three events.

aswimfan

Oh my bad, I made a big mistake:

Shane Gould actually did 100-200-400-800 (she won silver in the 800). And if there were 1,500, she could have at least medaled or even won in that event too as she was the WR holder in the event, and she broke the 1,500 WR again in 1973.

Doubtful we will ever see that kind of performance again.

Lennart van Haaften

Aswimfan, you’re right that Biondi was as close in terms of medals. VDH was much closer to gold in time though (0.05s), he lost the race on the blocks due to his poor reaction time. I agree that Thorpe’s 2001 performance was more impressive than Hackett’s in 2005. It’s just in terms of individual medals that Hackett did better.

Lennart van Haaften

Besides Gould there are also two men who won 4 medals in freestyle events at a single Olympics: Charles Daniels and Francis Gailey. Interestingly both in 1904 St. Louis. So far, Tim Shaw is the only man to win every available event from 200 to 1500 at the same WC/OG.

Lane Four

I feel badly that Shaw never showed his true form in 1976 because of illness.

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