Beginning on October 21st, the Florida High School Athletics Association launched their 2013 District Championship meets.
In Florida, these district meets are particularly noteworthy to a broad audience as they are a direct qualifier to the regional and then state levels. Most states in the country have gone to qualifying times systems instead, but a few (like Florida and Texas, notably) still use this place-by-place advancement).
This means that, in the least, that we can cull the races that some of the biggest stars will be swimming at State, and for now, we’ll highlight two potential National High School Record holders.
In Class 2A, District 3, Clay High School’s Caeleb Dressel will swim at the O’Connell Center on the University of Florida campus on Friday, October 25th, at 10AM.
Dressel, who already is the National High School Record holder in the 50 yard free and 100 fly, will be giving himself four opportunities for records, at least in the early stages of the advancement.
He will swim the 200 yard free and 100 fly individually (he broke the 100 fly record mid-season this year at the FSPA Invitational with a 45.89), and the plan is to have him lead off the 200 and 400 yard free relays. Those lead-off splits could give him records in both the 50 (he was a 19.36 to break that record already at FSPA) and 100 yard freestyles.
The two of those in which he is not yet the holder are the 100 and 200 yard freestyles.
In the 100, his flat-start best is a 43.29 – from the 2012 Winter Junior Nationals, which was a quick turnaround from last year’s state championship meet. The overall and public school records in that event belongs to former Hershey HS (PA) swimmer David Nolan in 42.34. Nolan set his record in a relay lead-off as well.
In the 200 yard free, Dressel swam a 1:35.51 at the NCSA Junior Nationals in March of 2013, which is a bigger margin off of Tom Shields’ 1:33.83 from his senior year at Edison High in California. Shields did that time in a prelims swim.
Dressel is not really all that close to either record on paper, but given the improvements he showed over the summer, especially in the 200, we know that they’re sitting on thin ice.
The other obvious National High School record holder sitting behind the blocks this weekend is the Bolles School’s Joseph Schooling at the Class 1A District 2 Meet. Their swimming portion will be at Jacksonville’s Episcopal High School on Thursday at 3PM (with diving at Bolles). He will swim the 100 fly as his only individual event, along with three Bolles relays – the same schedule he took on last season.
Note that the Florida High School qualifying procedures have changed slightly this year as they go to a system of 4 state meets.
For a complete listing of dates/times for this year’s Florida District Championship meets, click here.