The big story of the Moscow World Cup stop that begins Wednesday in Moscow is that the American Junior squad, including stars like Celina Li and Becca Mann, will begin a two-meet run against some of the world’s best. They will be joined by Tom Shields, Anthony Ervin, and Jessica Hardy, but will not be joined by Ryan Lochte. Despite the Russian Federation’s claim a few weeks ago that Lochte would swim their World Cup, he is not on the meet’s start lists.
The Americans will finally have the two men and two women required to enter teams into the 4×50 co-ed free and medley relays, which are making their debut at this year’s series. Those squads haven’t had names officially attached to them, but with only four men on the American roster (Ervin, Shields, Sean Mahoney, and junior Gunnar Bentz) we can be pretty sure that they’ll be involved.
That’s about all that’s new in Moscow so far. The start lists above are not necessarily complete, but as of now they do not include Ruta Meilutyte, Therese Alshammar, or Britta Steffen, all of whom have won multiple events at the series so far. Meilutyte is not expected to swim, but Alshammar and Steffen both are.
It also excludes Katinka Hosszu’s name from the 400 IM as well as those of Laszlo Cseh and Daiya Seto on the men’s side. Expect more updates coming to the above lists, but we can tell for sure that there will be huge Russian participation in the meet.
This may have to do with many athletes struggling to get through Russian customs; with the meet’s first prelims session just a few hours away, many of the athletes have just arrived in Moscow in the 90 minutes.