2021 Pro Swim Series – Richmond: Day 2 Prelims Recap

2021 PRO SWIM SERIES – Richmond

The first full day of this weekend’s multi-site Pro Swim Series gets underway this morning in Richmond and San Antonio. While USA Swimming is considering San Antonio the “primary” site, with the bulk of National Teamers competing there, Richmond should still have plenty of great races, even after some of the top names have scratched.

Women’s 200 Free Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:54.43, Katie Ledecky (USA), 2016
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 2:01.69

Top 8:

  1. Erin Gemmell (NCAP) – 2:00.56
  2. Tess Howley (LIAC) – 2:01.16
  3. Cavan Gormsen (LIAC) – 2:01.83
  4. Kayla Wilson (TIDE) – 2:03.00
  5. Macky Hodges (MVN) – 2:03.19
  6. Claire Weinstein (WEST) – 2:03.25
  7. Ashley Twichell (TAC) – 2:03.75
  8. Eleanore Marquadt (TIDE) – 2:03.92

16 year-old Erin Gemmell of NCAP held the top spot on the psych sheet, and she’ll swim in lane 4 tonight after putting up the fastest time of the morning. That time of 2:00.56 is less than a second away from her lifetime best of 1:59.85, and is the third-fastest time of her career.

Men’s 200 Free Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:44.82, Sun Yang (CHN), 2016
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 1:50.79

Top 8:

  1. Jeff Newkirk (TXLA) – 1:52.52
  2. Anders Aistars (MVN) – 1:53.50
  3. Billy Swartwout (Unattached) – 1:53.65
  4. Aayush Deshpande (FMC) – 1:54.15
  5. Jack Stelter (WFS) – 1:55.85
  6. Peyton Warner (FMC) – 1:55.88
  7. Kevin Jackson (KING) – 1:57.34

With only eight men entered in this event after a couple rounds of scratches, swimmers were all assured a spot in tonight’s final, and were only really swimming for lane assignments. Still, top-seeded Jeff Newkirk led this morning’s times by nearly a second, posting a 1:52.52 to earn lane 4 tonight. Even without the pressure of needing a fast swim to make the final, the 2nd and 3rd-fastest finishers, Anders Aistars (1:53.50) and Billy Swartwout (1:53.65), both put up new lifetime bests. Only seven men will actually swim tonight, as Reid Miller is listed as a DQ.

Women’s 100 Breast Prelims

  • PSS Record: 1:05.57, Rebecca Soni (USA), 2011
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 1:10.99

Top 8:

  1. Emily Escobedo (COND) – 1:08.36
  2. Letitia Sim (TNT) – 1:08.97
  3. Miranda Tucker (Unattached) – 1:09.50
  4. Kaylee Hamblin (MSA) – 1:10.64
  5. Grace Rainey (MAC) – 1:12.24
  6. Denise Phelan (TS) – 1:13.72
  7. Caroline Kudela (MSA) – 1:13.97
  8. Ella Smith (ABF) – 1:14.81

Veteran Emily Escobedo (1:08.36) and 17 year-old Letitia Sim (1:08.97) were the only two under 1:09 this morning, as Sim set a new personal best by 0.20s. Top-seeded Miranda Tucker put up the 3rd-fastest time of the morning with a 1:09.50.

Men’s 100 Breast Prelims

  • PSS Record: 58.86, Adam Peaty (GBR), 2017
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 1:03.29

Top 8:

  1. Arsenio Bustos (Unattached) – 1:03.54
  2. Dylan Rhee (AGUA) – 1:o3.98
  3. Ethan Browne (Unattached) – 1:04.39
  4. Andrew Dorsel (MAC) – 1:04.45
  5. Luke Rodarte (Unattached) – 1:04.92
  6. Aiken Do (FISH) – 1:05.34
  7. Cameron Abaqueta (MAC) – 1:05.72
  8. Aidan Duffy (NOVA) – 1:05.94

NC State commit Arsenio Bustos knocked 0.21s off of his lifetime best to put up the fastest time of the morning with a 1:03.54. Dylan Rhee was within half a second of his best time to take the #2 seed with a 1:03.98. Ethan Browne, the only swimmer entered with a seed time under 1:03, went 1:04.39 to round out the morning’s top three.

Women’s 100 Fly Prelims

  • PSS Record: 56.38, Sarah Sjostrom (SWE), 2016
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 1:00.69

Top 8:

  1. Tess Howley (LIAC) – 1:00.26
  2. Maddy Banic (TNAQ) – 1:00.29
  3. Bailey Nero (NCAC) – 1:01.24
  4. Letitia Sim (TNT) – 1:01.69
  5. McKenna Stone (FMC) – 1:01.92
  6. Joanna Kozan (MVN) – 1:02.00
  7. Nicole Venema (TIDE) – 1:02.26
  8. Levenia Sim (TNT) – 1:02.34

After finishing a little over half a second behind Gemmell in the 200 free earlier in the session, LIAC’s Tess Howley earned the top seed in the 100 fly with her time of 1:00.26, just 0.17s away from her lifetime best. Tennessee alum Maddy Banic was just behind Howley with a 1:00.29. Banic, who’s been 50-point in the 100 yard fly and had a breakout SCM season swimming in the ISL, could also be posed to better her lifetime best (59.95).

Bailey Nero rounded out the top three with a 1:01.24, while Letitia Sim put up the 4th-fastest time of the morning (1:01.69) shortly after taking the 2nd seed in the 100 breast.

Men’s 100 Fly Prelims

  • PSS Record: 50.92, Caeleb Dressel (USA), 2020
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 54.19

Top 8:

  1. Aiden Hayes (SSC) – 52.92
  2. Coleman Stewart (WOLF) – 52.93
  3. Justin Wright (NCAC) – 53.01
  4. Jack Saunderson (WOLF) – 53.10
  5. Arsenio Bustos (Unattached) – 54.44
  6. Micah Slaton (Unattached) – 54.60
  7. Thomas Bried (ACE) – 55.10
  8. Aayush Deshpande (FMC) – 55.18

This could be shaping up to be the race of the day, as the top four swimmers all touched within 0.18s of each other. NC State commit Aiden Hayes hit a new lifetime best by exactly 1.00, touching in 52.92. NC State alum Coleman Stewart finished just 0.01s behind Hayes, touching in 52.93. Arizona alum Justin Wright, now swimming for North Carolina Aquatics Club, put up the 3rd-fastest time in 53.01, and Towson swimmer-turned Wolfpack-postgrad Jack Saunderson was close behind at 53.10.

Women’s 400 IM Prelims

  • PSS Record: 4:31.07, Katinka Hosszu (HUN), 2015
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 4:51.79

Top 8:

  1. Zoe Dixon (NOVA) – 4:45.55
  2. Samantha Tadder (TIDE) – 4:49.72
  3. Summer Smith (ABF) – 4:50.59
  4. Grace Sheble (NOVA) – 4:52.89
  5. Makayla Sargent (WOLF) – 4:55.24
  6. Abigail O’Sullivan (MVN) – 4:56.74
  7. Aislin Farris (ABF) – 4:58.60
  8. Payton Foster (GYWD) – 4:59.71

Most of the field understandably didn’t come close to hitting lifetime bests this morning, but NOVA’s Zoe Dixon bucked the trend a bit, taking the top seed with a time of 4:45.55 that’s only 0.37s away from her personal best, and her 2nd-fastest time ever. While Dixon led by over four seconds this morning, expect the race to be closer tonight, as another four women in the A-final have lifetime bests of 4:45 or better. That includes Makayla Sargent, who was “only” 4:55.24 this morning, but owns a lifetime best of 4:37.95.

Men’s 400 IM Prelims

  • PSS Record: 4:08.92, Chase Kalisz (USA), 2018
  • Olympic Trials Cut: 4:25.99

Top 8:

  1. Josh Parent (ABF) – 4:27.06
  2. Thomas Bried (ACE) – 4:30.32
  3. Baylor Nelson (MAC) – 4:32.06
  4. Andrew Dorsel (MAC) – 4:34.54
  5. Peyton Warner (FMC) – 4:.39.05
  6. Aidan Duffy (NOVA) – 4:39.40
  7. Caleb Maldari (ABF) – 4:40.33
  8. Chris Balbo (MACH) – 4:41.33

Again, all 8 swimmers guaranteed to make finals and most of the field swimming their second event of the morning, there wasn’t a ton of need to put up fast times. Still, Josh Parent was within a second of his lifetime time best to take lane 4 tonight with his time of 4:27.06. Parent came in 2nd last night in the 800 free.

Shortly after swimming the 100 fly, Thomas Bried knocked 1.57s off of his lifetime best to put the 2nd-fastest time of the morning with a 4:30.32. Baylor Nelson, one of the top recruits in the high school boys class of 2022, rounded out with the top three with a time of 4:32.06, but it really could be just about anyone’s race to win tonight.

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Ol' Longhorn
3 months ago

Am I the only one that’s having trouble with the Tess Howley/Townley Haas brain scramble?

Right Dude Here
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
3 months ago

I was just thinking that. Also Josh Parent/Prenot.