2020 U.S. Open — Sarasota Thursday PM Recap: Finke Drops 7:53.05 800 FR

2020 U.S. Open Swimming Championships

The 2020 U.S. Open Sarasota site has kicked off swimming competition on Thursday evening with the timed finals of the men’s and women’s 800 free.

Virginia commit Emma Weyant, representing Sarasota Sharks, easily distanced herself to take the win at 8:34.93. Her time was just a few seconds off her top seed time of 8:29.31, which ranks in the all-time 17-18 women’s top 25 times in history.

National teamer Ally McHugh won the Indy site’s 800 free with a time of 8:29.36 just an hour before Weyant hit the water. McHugh and Weyant rank #1 and #2 respectively in the nation as well as sliding in the 2020-2021 World top 10 times thus far.

Swimming the second-fastest time of the second heat was 16-year-old Blair Stoneburg of Treasure Coast Aquatics. The Wisconsin class of 2026 commit touched the wall at 8:45.23, chopping 17 seconds off her lifetime best of 9:02.75 from August 2019.

Taking third place overall was 15-year-old Michaela Mattes of Sarasota Sharks at 8:47.79, shaving nearly three-tenths off her lifetime best set at last year’s U.S. Open meet in Atlanta. Finishing in fourth place was Swim Florida’s Olivia McMurray at 8:54.16.

On the men’s side, University of Florida’s Bobby Finke stormed the race with the only sub-8:00 time of 7:53.05. Earlier at Indy, Egyptian Marwan El Kamash took the top time there with a 7:52.19. Finke’s time currently ranks #2 in the world behind El Kamash and #1 in the nation so far.

Taking a tight second place finish was fellow Florida Gator Kieran Smith, touching in at 8:00.05. Challenging Smith from three lanes over and settling for third place was another Gator Alfonso Mestre at 8:00.49.

Tomorrow’s morning session is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. ET/8 a.m. CT here in Sarasota.

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Simon
7 months ago

Florida boys suited?

LongCorse
Reply to  Simon
7 months ago

I’m assuming so? I’m not sure I know anyone who can go 7:53 unsuited

MarkB
Reply to  LongCorse
7 months ago

Perkins, Thorpe, Hackett, Zheng Lin.

Joe
Reply to  MarkB
7 months ago

Thorpe’s unsuited 3:41 in a brief at 16 is good enough to win Olympics/Worlds lol

Florida Coach
Reply to  Simon
7 months ago

We need to question Finke’s time. It was wind aided. The Tropical storm/Hurricane was just up the coast

Admin
Reply to  Florida Coach
7 months ago

In a 50 wind can be an aide. In an 800, it’s counterproductive. Presuming it blows in roughly the same direction throughout the race, that wind would either blow you into a lanerope constantly, or it would blow at your back for less time than at your front.

Plus half the pools have currents anyway, wind or not 😉

Florida Coach
Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

At Florida they teach you how to sail (swim) into the wind at high speed. Braden, you have been punked.

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

Hmm, I guess I expected something better from Finke, in the 7:40s.

Andreas
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

He will go that when it matters

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Andreas
7 months ago

Down vote away, but this time is not that good. Isn’t this a championship meet, shouldn’t he be dropping a 7:4x now?

Khachaturian
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

It also helps if you have some competition that can go that fast along side of you. But you are right in that it should be a bit faster since it is an olympic event.

._.
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

This hardly resembles a championship meet considering how small the participation is at each site. The Sarasota meet is basically a UF intrasquad on the men’s side.

swimfan210_
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

Of course we’re still just coming out of quarantine, not everyone will be at their best, especially distance swimmers who swim the more demanding races which would probably require a lot of training to be at their best, and do long hard sets all the time (while sprinters could have benefitted more from extra strength training/being fresher and the sprint races are easier.)

Aquajosh
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

I don’t know if Florida is taking these guys to the Auburn Invite next week, so if they are using this as their midseason meet to qualify for NCAAs while getting some long course racing in, there would be zero reason to expend too much energy on an event he can’t use to qualify.

Florida Coach
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

Sam, you need to know the Florida Mentally on Training. SEC’s matters, NCAA’s matters more, but the Olympic Trials is where it’s at. I suppose Finke did taper down to 12,000 meters for a day or two.

Dan
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

My assumption is that they did not rest much – if anything, they are probably focusing on either SEC/NCAA or going straight for Trials.

Liza
7 months ago

Anyone able to live stream Sarasota location? Links don’t seem live

About Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro started swimming at age 11, instantly becoming drawn to the sport. He was a breaststroker and IMer when competing. After joining SwimSwam, the site has become an outlet for him to research and learn about competitive swimming and experience the sport through a new lenses. He graduated in …

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