The best gathering of U.S. swim stars in one year takes place this week, three months before the Olympic Trials, live on Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA.
A Tyr Pro Series stop in San Antonio features the most decorated active Americans. Katie Ledecky and Simone Manuel swim in their first full meet since last March. Caeleb Dressel, Ryan Murphy and Ryan Lochte are also entered.
“We’re kind of in crunch time now,” Ledecky said last week.
Finals air live on Olympic Channel, NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. ET. NBCSN airs replays Thursday (12 a.m.) and Friday (10 p.m.).
It’s an early preview of June’s trials, where the top two per individual event are in line to make the Tokyo Olympic team.
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Men’s 100m Freestyle (Thursday): Dressel swam the second-fastest time in history at the 2019 Worlds. Also entered: Nathan Adrian, the 2012 Olympic champion going for his fourth Olympic team and coming back from testicular cancer, ranks eighth in the nation since the start of 2019. He will likely need to be top six at Olympic Trials to qualify for Tokyo in the 4x100m free relay pool.
Women’s 200m Butterfly (Thursday): Regan Smith owns both backstroke world records, but this is her third event and likely on her Olympic Trials slate. Smith, a 19-year-old who deferred Stanford enrollment, ranks second in the nation since the start of 2019. The San Antonio field also includes the rest of the top four, led by world silver medalist Hali Flickinger. The women’s 200m fly is the only Olympic pool swimming event where the U.S. did not earn a medal in at least one of the last two Games. Its last medal was Misty Hyman‘s surprise gold at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Women’s 200m Freestyle (Friday): The usual meeting ground between Ledecky, the world’s best distance swimmer, and Manuel, the world’s best sprinter. Ledecky, in the shortest individual event she contests at major international meets, is the fastest American since the start of 2019 by 1.42 seconds and a comfortable favorite for one of the two Olympic spots. Manuel, in her longest individual event, swam a personal best leading off the 4x200m freestyle relay at the 2019 World Championships, ranking her third in the nation since the start of 2019.
Men’s 200m Individual Medley (Saturday): This event is Lochte’s best chance to make it to Tokyo and become the oldest U.S. Olympic male swimmer in history at age 36. He ranks fifth in the nation since the start of 2019. The top two — Chase Kalisz and Michael Andrew — are also entered. Lochte called his last meet — the U.S. Open in November — probably the worst of his life.
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