The U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials are moving to Indianapolis in 2024, in the event’s largest indoor venue ever, ending a run of four consecutive times that Omaha hosted.
The Indianapolis Colts’ Lucas Oil Stadium will host the meet in two years, marking a record-extending seventh time that the city will host an Olympic swimming trials. It first hosted the men’s trials in 1924, when the Olympics were in Paris, as they will be in 2024.
The Indianapolis Star first reported the trials venue.
Indianapolis hosted trials again in 1952 (women), 1984, 1992, 1996 and 2000, when a 15-year-old Michael Phelps made his first Olympic team.
This will be the first time that a major professional sports team venue will hold the meet. The Indiana University Natatorium held trials the last four times they were in Indianapolis.
After trials were held outside in a Long Beach, California, parking lot in 2004, it became an arena show in Omaha starting in 2008 at a venue with about 14,500 seats.
Lucas Oil Stadium has a capacity of nearly 70,000 for football games. USA Swimming plans for 30,000 to 35,000 seats for trials, which would break the known record for most fans at an indoor Olympic swimming trials, according to the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
The 1932 women’s trials were held outdoors in Long Island, N.Y., with more than 40,000 fans, according to ISHOF records. The largest capacity for an Olympic swimming venue was 25,000 for the 1936 Berlin Games, according to the ISHOF, confirming the Indianapolis Star report.
Indianapolis was a finalist for trials as recently as 2016, while Omaha was selected for 2021 without a bid process. Omaha, Minneapolis and St. Louis were the other finalists for 2024.
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