Austin Elite Invite

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Michael Phelps, Missy Franklin beaten in 200m freestyles in Austin

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Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin can afford results like on Saturday now, but not in four weeks.

Phelps and Franklin were both beaten in 200m freestyles at the Austin Elite Invite in Texas, expected to be their final meet before the Olympic Trials in Omaha from June 26-July 3. Full meet results are here.

Phelps finished fourth in his 200m free, behind three younger Americans who have recently swum for the University of Texas. The field did not include the U.S.’ top men in the event, Conor Dwyer and Ryan Lochte.

Phelps’ time, 1:48.73, did not improve on the best times of his comeback (1:48.20 in 2014 and 1:48.21 on April 14).

“Tonight was really kind of upsetting, frustrated me,” Phelps told Swimswam.com. “You kind of just have to trust [coach] Bob [Bowman].”

Phelps wants to be part of the Olympic 4x200m free relay for a fourth straight Games, but that is not a given since the fastest 200m free of his comeback would have placed eighth at the 2012 Olympic Trials. (Phelps did split a stronger 1:46.08 in the middle of a 4x200m free relay at the 2014 Pan Pacific Championships)

Franklin faces a tougher task, to finish in the top two in the 200m freestyle at the Olympic Trials. That’s because she’s up against the reigning Olympic champion Allison Schmitt and the reigning World champion Katie Ledecky.

On Saturday, the 2013 World champion Franklin was beaten by Schmitt in the 200m free for a second straight meet, this time by a comfortable .91 of a second. Ledecky, who owns the fastest time in the world this year, is not competing this weekend. Schmitt also beat Franklin in the 100m freestyle on Friday.

However, Franklin was faster on Saturday (1:57.78) than she was at this meet four years ago (1:57.91), a sign that she’s on the right track as she trains to peak at the Olympic Trials.

Later Saturday, Franklin won the 200m backstroke in 2:09.45. The field did not include her top rivals to make the Olympic team — Maya DiRadoKathleen Baker and Elizabeth Beisel.

The Austin Elite Invite ends Sunday.

MORE: Phelps’ concussion, more highlights from Bob Bowman’s book

Michael Phelps, Missy Franklin beaten in Olympic Trials tune-up meet

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Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin appear to have their work cut out at the U.S. Olympic Trials later this month to earn spots on Rio 4x100m freestyle relays.

Phelps and Franklin both swam their fastest 100m freestyles of 2016 in a trials tune-up meet in Austin, Texas, on Friday night, but neither posted a time that ranks in the top five among Americans in the event this year.

Phelps won the Austin men’s 100m freestyle in 49.49 seconds (full results here) against a field that did not include the top Americans in the event. He is ranked eighth in the U.S. Usually, the top six finishers in the 100m free at the Olympic Trials earn Olympic 4x100m free relay berths.

Phelps later was beaten in the 100m butterfly in Austin by Joseph Schooling of Singapore, 51.58 to 51.65, but Phelps remains fastest among Americans in the fly this year.

“Kind of happy, kind of not,” Phelps said in a Facebook video. “It’s decent, but I’m always really very hard on myself. … Today was a little motivating. … I would have been a lot happier if I was a half-second faster in both of the 100s today.”

The fastest Americans in the 100m free this year are Olympic champion Nathan Adrian (48.00) and University of Florida rising junior Caeleb Dressel (personal-best 48.74 in a different meet Friday). But no other American has broken 49 seconds, leaving a wide opening for Phelps and others.

Phelps has made the Olympic 4x100m free relay in the past without swimming the 100m free at trials, but given his lack of impressive 100m free times since the start of 2015, he may have to post a strong time in Omaha in three weeks to prove he deserves a relay spot.

His coach, Bob Bowman, is the U.S. Olympic men’s head coach. The coaching staff determines relay lineups at the Olympics.

In the Austin women’s 100m freestyle, Allison Schmitt won in 54.30 seconds, her fastest time since the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.

Franklin took second in 54.56, her fastest time this year but just ninth-fastest among Americans for 2016.

Franklin made the 100m freestyle final at every major international meet from 2012 through 2015, but she goes into the Olympic Trials as an underdog in the weakest of her four primary events. Dana Vollmer and Katie Ledecky have the fastest U.S. 100m freestyle times in 2016 at 53.59 and 53.75.

In other meets Friday, China’s Sun Yang won a 200m freestyle in Santa Clara, Calif., in 1:44.82, the fastest time in the world since 2013. Sun is the reigning Olympic 400m and 1500m free champion and earned silver in London in the 200m free.

Sun could now be favored to become the first swimmer to sweep the 200m, 400m and 1500m frees at one Olympics.

MORE: Phelps eyes at least three events at Olympic Trials

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said Ryan Lochte was not competing this weekend. He is swimming at a small meet in Charlotte.

U.S. swim stars spread across three Olympic Trials tune-up meets

Michael Phelps, Missy Franklin
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Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin are expected to headline a host of U.S. Olympic medalists across three swim meets the first weekend of June in the last top-level domestic competitions before the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Phelps and Franklin are both scheduled to race at the Austin Elite Invite in Texas from June 3-5. Olympic 200m freestyle champion Allison Schmitt, a training partner of Phelps, and Olympic 100m backstroke champion Matt Grevers are also slated for that meet.

Phelps and Franklin last competed at a USA Swimming Pro Series meet in Mesa, Ariz., in mid April.

Phelps withdrew before a meet in Atlanta two weeks ago as his fiancée was set to give birth to their first child, a boy they named Boomer.

Franklin withdrew before the end of the Mesa meet on coaches orders because she was not feeling 100 percent, according to her social media.

Also the first weekend of June, Olympic champions Natalie CoughlinNathan AdrianDana Vollmer and Anthony Ervin lead the field for a USA Swimming Pro Series meet in Santa Clara, Calif.

London Olympians Connor JaegerMicah Lawrence and Shannon Vreeland headline the field for a USA Swimming Pro Series meet in Indianapolis from June 3-5.

Ryan Lochte and Katie Ledecky have not been announced for any of the three meets but could still compete before the Olympic Trials, which are June 26-July 3 in Omaha, Neb.

MORE: Full U.S. Olympic Trials broadcast schedule