Michael Phelps entered in 5 events at Olympic Trials; Ryan Lochte in 400m IM

Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte
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Michael Phelps is entered in five events, and Ryan Lochte is entered in the 400m individual medley, at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials that start Sunday in Omaha.

Missy Franklin and Katie Ledecky are entered in four and six events, respectively.

Entry lists were published Wednesday. Swimmers can of course scratch out of events they entered, but they cannot enter events for which they are not named on those lists. The NBC broadcast and daily schedule is here.

Phelps is entered in his three signature individual events — 100m and 200m butterflies and 200m individual medley — and the 100m freestyle and 200m freestyle.

Phelps is not believed to have designs on trying to make the Olympic team in the individual 100m or 200m free (by finishing top two in the Trials final). Rather, it’s believed he wants to be included on the 4x100m and 4x200m free relays at a fourth straight Olympics.

Phelps doesn’t have to swim the 100m or 200m free at Trials to be eligible for the relay pools. However, a strong time at Trials (even if in the preliminary heats) would boost his case to be selected for the 4x100m and 4x200m free in Rio, should he make the team individually in any event.

SWIM TRIALS: Broadcast ScheduleEntry Lists
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Lochte is also entered in the Trials 100m free, likely with the same relay-only hopes as Phelps. But the bigger news is that Lochte is entered in the 400m IM, the individual event he won at the London Games.

Lochte has been coy for months about whether he would race the grueling 400m IM at Trials. He hasn’t raced it at a U.S. Nationals or internationally since the London Games.

In fact, Lochte swam it once in an Olympic-sized pool in 2013 and 2014 combined. But he swam it at two domestic meets each in 2015 and 2016, ranking second in the U.S. this year and leading many to predict that he would enter it at the Olympic Trials.

“If you win it at the Olympics, you have to swim it at the next Trials,” Phelps joked in January, alluding to his own late decision to re-add the 400m IM in 2012. Phelps finished second to Lochte in the 400m IM at those Olympic Trials and then a disappointing fourth at the London Games.

Lochte’s events are the 100m and 200m frees, 200m backstroke, 100m butterfly and 200m and 400m IMs.

Also at these Trials, Franklin is entered in the 100m and 200m backstrokes and 100m and 200m freestyles.

Ledecky is entered in the 50m, 100m, 200m, 400m and 800m freestyles and the 400m individual medley, though the 400m IM may be merely a warm-up swim on the first day of competition for the freestyle star.

MORE: USA Swimming moves pre-Olympic training camp due to Zika virus

Kelly Cheng, Sara Hughes, beach volleyball’s new sensation, win World Tour Finals

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In just a few months since reuniting, Kelly Cheng and Sara Hughes have become not just the best women’s beach volleyball team in the U.S., but also, arguably, the world.

Cheng and Hughes, former partners who got back together for a 2024 Olympic run, won the World Tour Finals for the biggest title for a U.S. pair since April Ross and Alix Klineman took gold in Tokyo.

The 27-year-old Californians swept reigning world champions Duda and Ana Patricia of Brazil 21-18, 21-16 in Sunday’s final in Doha.

Cheng and Hughes have entered four tournaments since reuniting last fall and won all of them — once on the domestic AVP tour and now three international events.

They are rolling into the start of the 2024 Olympic qualifying window next week. It’s likely that the top two U.S. women’s pairs across international events over the course of the next 18 months qualify for the Paris Games.

Cheng and Hughes were previously NCAA champion teammates at USC, then the most promising, young U.S. pro team before splitting in 2018. Cheng made the Tokyo Olympics with Sarah Sponcil (lost in the round of 16), while Hughes’ Tokyo bid flamed out when partner Summer Ross suffered a back injury in 2019.

“It was a lot of the unknown and being young and kind of immature and listening to maybe outside forces and not really knowing how to deal with things as well,” Hughes said in October of their past breakup. “We’ve pretty much moved past that in our relationship. Moving forward with one another, we’re completely different players, and we’re a lot more mature. It feels like the right time. The past is past. We’re just moving forward.”

Cheng and Hughes have taken over from April Ross and Klineman as the top U.S. team. After winning Olympic gold, Klineman underwent shoulder surgery in January 2022 and last week announced she is pregnant and may return from childbirth for a “last-second” 2024 Olympic qualifying bid.

April Ross, a 40-year-old with an Olympic medal of every color, last competed in March, then withdrew before June’s world championships, where she was entered with Emily Day, with an unspecified injury. She has not announced if or when she plans to return to competition.

The U.S. earned at least one beach volleyball medal at every Olympics that the sport has been on the program (since 1996), and a men’s or women’s gold at all but one Olympics. Eighteen months out from the Paris Games, Cheng and Hughes are the best hope to keep the podium streak going.

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Germany opens bobsled worlds with double gold; Kaillie Humphries gets silver

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Germans Laura Nolte and Johannes Lochner dethroned the reigning Olympic and world champions to open the world bobsled championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland, this weekend.

Nolte, the Olympic two-woman champion driver, won the four-run monobob by four tenths of a second over American Kaillie Humphries, who won the first world title in the event in 2021 and the first Olympic title in the event in 2022. Another German, Lisa Buckwitz, took bronze.

In the two-man, Lochner became the first driver to beat countryman Francesco Friedrich in an Olympic or world championships event since 2016, ending Friedrich’s record 12-event streak at global championships between two-man and four-man.

Friedrich, defeated by 49 hundredths, saw his streak of seven consecutive world two-man titles also snapped.

Lochner, 32, won his first outright global title after seven Olympic or world silvers, plus a shared four-man gold with Friedrich in 2017.

Swiss Michael Vogt drove to bronze, one hundredth behind Friedrich. Geoff Gadbois and Martin Christofferson filled the top American sled in 18th.

Americans Steven Holcomb and Steven Langton were the last non-Germans to win a world two-man title in 2012.

Bobsled worlds finish next weekend with the two-woman and four-man events.

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