US Olympic Swimming Trials is, arguably, one of the greatest swimming competitions on earth. It’s certainly one of the best production of an aquatic event. For the right city, it is a highly coveted 8-day tent-pole competition, and several cities are lining up to make their pitch to be the 2016 host.
Rumors were circulating that Dallas was the leader, but that turned out to be merely talk. Dallas Cowboy reps attended a couple of informal meetings about hosting the 2016 Trials at Cowboys Stadium, one in Colorado Springs, USA Swimming’s HQ, and one during the 2012 Trials in Omaha. At this point, however, it appears they may not be putting a proposal together.
As many as 16 other cities are putting their hats in the ring, including Greensboro, Louisville, Jacksonville, and two-time host, Omaha, as reported by WTHR.com.
A tried and true swimming host, Indianapolis, has the potential to be a front-runner. Indy’s IUPUI Natatorium has hosted the US Olympic Swimming Trials six time before, not to mention countless USA Swimming national championships, NCAA Championships, and even the 2004 FINA Short Course World Championships.
The Indianapolis Sport Corp is reportedly stepping up for the 2016 Trials, and they’re not pitching the IUPUI Natatorium swimmers know and love well. Frankly, the venue is too small to support the 15,000 fans that attend each session. Trials, according to USA Swimming standards, requires that level of seating plus two 50 meter pools to accommodate the elite swimmers.
“The above ground pools (temporary pools) would instead be built at Lucas Oil Stadium,” The Sports Corp’s John Dedman told WTHR.
Consider it, a football stadium, one that hosted the Superbowl, hosing the 2016 US Olympic Swimming Trials. The $700 million stadium, opened in 2008, holds 60,000 plus; though we are probably a few decades away from turning up that many for a swim meet, so a bid there would likely involve curtaining off a certain portion of the facility. The potential, though, especially in a swimming-friendly state like Indiana, would be huge.
Don’t get too carried away. The Sports Corp, according to Debman, has made it clear they’re interested, however, they have not submitted a formal bid for the 2016 Trials…yet.
USA Swimming will likely make their decision on the 2016 Trials host city in May.