- For more information on what the S1-S14 classes mean, see Mallory Weggemann’s guide to “decoding the classification system” here.
- See the Day 4 finals preview here.
- The closest to any live stream: Follow @malloryweggemann on Twitter as she gives the play-by-play.
15-year old Maddison Elliott of Australia is the heir to the throne in the S8 class, but American Jessica Long reminded the world on Saturday of her status as the reigning star at the 2014 Pan Pacific Para-Swimming Championships in Pasadena, California.
Long slowly built a lead in the women’s 200 IM through 150 meters, but on the freestyle she just drilled the field into the ground, splitting a 34.31 – six seconds better than Elliott was. That made the final result seem more lopsided than it was for most of the competition, but Long won in 2:40.48, while Elliott finished 2nd in 2:50.13.
That’s not close to Long’s personal best, but it is right around the mark she went at Trials, and faster than anybody else in the world has been this year, or in at least the last four years. The way that Long dominates the all-time lists in this event is reminiscent of what Michael Phelps did in his heyday in the IM’s.
In the other star-studded 200 IM field, the race featured all three medalists from last year’s World Championships.
Canada’s Brianna Nelson is the defending Paralympic silver medalist in the SM7 200 IM, a race in which then-13 year old Nikita Howarth from New Zealand was 7th.
In the years since, though, Howarth’s improvements have been at an electric pace. That includes winning the World Championship in 2013 and the Para Pan Pacs championship on Saturday with a 2:58.85. That’s her personal best, and the world’s fastest time in 2014.
Nelson took 2nd in 3:05.72, and American Cortney Jordan was 3rd in 3:06.02, which means that the podium here wound up in the exact same order as it did at Worlds last year in Montreal. Though Jacqueline Freney, the world’s fastest 200 IM’er in the category when she’s on her game, skipped the meet, the power in this event internationally lies outside of Europe. The winner there was Russia’s Oxana Guseva in just 3:16.05.
In the women’s S13 200 IM, American Becca Meyers took the win in 2:26.86, which broke the World Record set in London by Canada’s Valerie Grand-Maison. (Read more about that record here). She beat out country mate Colleen Young, giving the Americans a rare 1-2 finish at this meet, with Canada’s Rhea Schmidt placing 3rd in 2:42.23.
In the men’s 200 IM’s, the headline race of the night came in the SM10 class. Benoit Huot and Ian Silverman went head-to-head. Silverman went out to the lead at the halfway mark. That lead, however, wasn’t enough to hold off Huot, who is a fantastic breaststroker. He pulled away from Silverman on the third 50, and held off the freestyle specialist coming home for a 2:11.29-2:13.77 victory. Silverman did, however, break the American record in the class.
In the S9 class, Team USA’s Cody Bureau swam a 2:20.13, which broke the American, and Pan American, record in the SM9 class. He’s still got a ways to go for the World Record, which is a 2:13.60, but Bureau is well out in front of anybody in the Western Hemisphere. Australia’s Brenden Hall was 2nd in 2:23.56, and Japan’s Takuro Yamada placed 3rd in 2:25.75.
Other Winners on Day 4
Women’s 150 meter IM
- After Mexico’s Nely Miranda was DQ’ed in the prelims of the women’s SM4 150 meter IM, Brazil’s Rildene Firmino was left with the spotlight all to herself in the finals. She cruised to victory in 3:48.90 – about a second slower than she was in prelims, but still a sturdy time. Her prelims swim leaves her 5th in the world this year.
Men’s 150 meter IM
- Grant Patterson continued his domination of the men’s S3/SM3 class by swimming a 3:14.64 in the men’s 150 meter IM to win by 20 seconds over American Michael DeMarco. While Patterson was dominant in the Commonwealth, in the “virtual battle” to the European Championships going on this week in Eindhoven, he was well behind the incredible Ukrainian duo of Dmytro Vynohradets and Andrii Derevinskyi. Vyonhradets won the same event in the Netherlands with a 2:49.74. That’s 5 gold medals so far for Patterson by our count.
- Thanks to a no-show from Canadian Cameron MacDonald in finals, Australia’s Ahmed Kelly won the men’s SM4 150 meter IM in 3:02.79. Even unchallenged, that officially set the first SM4 Australian National Record in the event. Australia doesn’t have recognized records in that event yet, per their official books, as “standard times” labeled from October of 2011 still stand.
Women’s 200 meter IM
- Team USA rookie Haley Beranbaum finally broke through for a gold medal at this meet, winning the women’s SM4 200 meter IM with a 4:20.75. She was able to knock five seconds from her prelims time, though she was a touch slower than at Trials in Miami in March. The first-half of this race is where Beranbaum is at her best, but the teenager has a lot of room to grow and improve on the breaststroke and freestyle. That’s where she’ll need to work in order to contend in Rio.
- Mexico’s Vianney Trejo won the women’s SM6 200 IM in 3:23.98, beating out Brazil’s Susan Ribeiro in 3:25.47. Those two have been the stars of the class this week, with back-and-forth battles in several events, but Trejo has the advantage in the longer events (she also won the 400 free earlier this week). American Reilly Boyt took the bronze in 3:29.03. That’s her third medal of the meet, including two individual bronzes.
- Australia’s Madeleine Scott won the women’s SM9 200 IM in 2:40.86, eliciting the loudest reaction we’ve heard at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center this week. The reaction was in part due to this being one of the most competitive races that we’ve seen all week, as Scott won by just a tenth over Canada’s Katarina Roxon (2:40.98). Roxon held a substantial lead after the backstroke, but Scott fought back to pull in front on the breaststroke leg. While Roxon again had the better split on the freestyle.
- The women’s SM10 200 IM was just the opposite. In the SM10 class, Katherine Downie (2:31.33) dominated everything but the breaststroke, and though she gave some ground back to Canada’s Aurelie Rivard (2:33.50), she nevertheless picked up the gold medal.
- New Zealand’s Mary Fisher won the women’s SM11 200 IM in 2:50.26. She beat her only competitor Letticia Martinez of the United States, who finished 2nd in 3:12.66.
- Anabel Moro won the women’s SM12 200 IM in 2:50.93.
- Australia’s Kayla Clarke won the women’s S14 200 IM in 2:33.55 – she was a faster at Australian Nationals in March, where she swam a 2:32.22 that puts her 3rd in the world this year.
Men’s 200 Meter IM
- American Roy Perkins Jr. won the men’s SM5 200 IM in 3:26.94, taking advantage of the absence of the World Record holder Daniel Dias from Brazil. With Dias out, Perkins was left virtually unchallenged, as Argentina’s Ariel Quassi Sr. was 2nd in 3:44.97.
- Australian Matthew Haanappel won the men’s SM6 200 IM in 2:59.26
- Australian Matthew Levy swam a 2:38.33 in the SM7 class, which is the second-best time in the world in 2014 and the fastest he’s been since 2012. Ukraine’s Yevheniy Bohodayko won the European title earlier this week in 2:34.15.
- In the men’s SM8 race, Australia took both of the top two spots, and despite being teammates, they fought hard for the win. Jesse Aungles burned his first 100 meters and opened what appeared to be a nearly insurmountable 10 meter lead on the field, but Blake Cochrane was conserving energy for a big push. By the end of the breaststroke leg, he had almost pulled even, and then it was a shootout to the finish. Cochrane has just enough left in the final push to win 2:33.38-2:33.62. Luis Andrade from Mexico topped off the podium in 2:38.88.
- Bradley Snyder continued to claim the top rung of the podium with his 2:27.76 victory in the SM11 race. That was a best time by 2 seconds for Snyder, and it catapulted him to the top of the world rankings for 2014.
- Sean Russo of Australia won the SM13 class in 2:17.14. The world’s second-fastest SM13 this year beat the 3rd and 4th: Canada’s Nicolas-Guy Turbide (2:23.06) and Jacob Templeton of Australia (2:25.22).
- Adam Rahier of Canada went 2:20.87 to claim the SM14 title. He broke the PanAm record twice on Saturday: first with his prelims swim of 2:21.73, and then again in finals. Runner-up Mitchell Kilduff of Australia just out-touched Canadian Gordie Michie for second, 2:22.39 to 2:22.72. Kilduff’s time broke the Oceania record for SM14.
Women’s 50 Meter Backstroke
- American 13-year old Breanna Sprenger won an uncontested women’s S1 50 backstroke in 2:19.97.
- Edenia Garcia won the women’s S4 50 backstroke in 54.26. Mexico’s Nely Miranda was 2nd in 58.11.
- American and Loyola commit Alyssa Gialamas won the women’s S5 50 backstroke in 48.61. She’s the top-ranked 50 backstroker in the world this year.
Men’s 100 Meter Backstroke
- 57-year-old American Curtis Lovejoy was uncontested in the men’s S2 100 backstroke final. His time was 2:47.23.
- Talisson Glock of Brazil won the S6 race with the world’s fastest time for the year and a new PanAm record. Glock went a personal best of 1:14.72, 3/10 faster than his previous world-topping time, and 3 seconds faster than Iaroslav Semenenko’s winning time in Eindhoven this week.
- Italo Pereira of Brazil won the S7 race handily, finishing in 1:13.24. There was a thrilling race for second between Argentinians Matias De Andrade and Guillermo Marro; De Andrade edged his teammate 1:17.39 to 1:17.41.
- American Thomas Miazga went a best time of 1:12.17 en route to victory in the S8 class.
- Australia’s Brenden Hall and Americans Cody Bureau and Robert Griswold were locked in a three-way battle for the S9 title. Griswold was out fastest, turning in a 32-low at the 50. Hall (1:05.97) came back with a great second half and emerged victorious, while Bureau (1:06.18) just touched out Griswold (1:06.68) for second.
- In the S10 race it was Australia’s Michael Anderson (1:00.87) ahead of Benoit Huot of Canada (1:01.09) and Ian Silverman of USA (1:05.09). Anderson’s time is the fastest in the world this year.
- Once again it was Bradley Snyder with the gold in the S11 class. His winning time of 1:12.31 wasn’t his fastest of the year but still good enough to win. South Africa’s Hendrik Herbst won the silver medal with 1:14.95.
- Ignacio Gonzalez of Argentina won an uncontested S12 race with 1:10.20.
- The S13 race went to Charles Bouwer of South Africa. American Tucker Dupree was nearly even with him the whole race, finishing in 1:00.18. Sean Russo of Australia was third in 1:02.68.
- Just when we thought we’d seen the last of the close races, the individual events closed with a thrilling 1:06.98-1:07.04-1:07.18 finish from Gordie Michie of Canada, his teammate Adam Rahier, and Australia’s Daniel Fox, respectively.
Mixed 200 Meter 20 Point Free Relay
- Brazil topped Mexico and the US in the mixed 20 point relay. Their 2:33.23 was more than four seconds faster than the year’s top time of 2:37, which Brazil went at their Trials in April.
Men’s 400 Meter 34 Point Medley Relay
- Australia jumped to the top time of the year with a 4:20.91 in the 4×100 medley relay. USA finished second in 4:27.22 and Brazil was third in 4:34.68.