2024 U.S. Olympic Trials: Day 4 Finals Live Recap


The fourth evening session from the 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials is semi-final heavy, with four sets of semis to go along with two finals where two swimmers will officially secure spots on the team heading to Paris.

The first final of the night will be the women’s 100 backstroke, where all eyes will be on Regan Smith after she stormed to a new American Record of 57.47 in the semis, just 11 one-hundredths shy of Kaylee McKeown‘s world record (57.33).

World record watch will be in full effect for Smith tonight, while Katharine Berkoff is a big favorite to land the 2nd spot after she became just the fifth swimmer in history to go under 58 seconds in the semis (57.83).

Next up will be the men’s 800 freestyle, headlined by defending Olympic champion Bobby Finke. However, Finke won’t have Lane 4 tonight, as the distinction of top seed belongs to 18-year-old Luke Whitlock, who broke out earlier in the meet in the 400 free and put up the top time of 7:51.22 in the prelims. His best time of 7:50.20 is just over two seconds shy of the 17-18 National Age Group Record set by Larsen Jensen in 2003 (7:48.09).

The four sets of semi-finals promise to be exciting as well.

  • Men’s 100 free – Jack Alexy on world record watch? He’s still almost three-tenths back, but the Cal sprinter is coming off a scorching fast prelim swim of 47.08, tying him with Kyle Chalmers for #8 all-time. Alexy will swim alongside Caeleb Dressel (47.82) in the second semi, while the two other sub-48s of the morning, Chris Guiliano (47.65) and Hunter Armstrong (47.93) head the first heat.
  • Men’s 200 fly – The event is looking wide open after Carson Foster no-showed the prelims and Thomas Heilman was only 8th this morning and hasn’t looked at his best (yet). Mason Laur and Luca Urlando hold the top two seeds coming into tonight, with those two and Dare Rose the only three sub-1:56 in the prelims.
  • Women’s 100 free – No shortage of intrigue here. Simone Manuel and Abbey Weitzeil, who represented the U.S. in this event eight years ago in Rio (with Manuel winning gold), will be in Lane 4 in each of their respective semis after posting the top two times of the morning. Top seed coming in Kate Douglass and newly-minted 100 fly world record holder Gretchen Walsh will flank Manuel in the second semi, while Torri Huske joins Weitzeil in the first heat.
  • Men’s 200 breast – AJ Pouch had a big breakthrough swim this morning, crushing his two-year-old best time by more than eight-tenths of a second in 2:08.25, landing him the #1 seed for the semis. Josh Matheny (2:09.59) and Matt Fallon (2:09.81) were the only two others sub-2:10 this morning. The boys’ 17-18 NAG rankings also saw a shakeup in the prelims, as three swimmers moved into the top 10 all-time and made the semis: Josh BeyJordan Willis and Gabe Nunziata.


  • World Record: 46.80 — Pan Zhanle (CHN), 2024
  • American Record: 46.96 — Caeleb Dressel, 2019
  • U.S. Open Record: 47.08 — Jack Alexy (USA), 2024
  • World Junior Record: 46.86 – David Popovici (ROU), 2022
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: Caeleb Dressel, 47.39
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 48.34

Finals Qualifiers:

  1. Chris Guiliano (ND), 47.25
  2. Jack Alexy (CAL), 47.33
  3. Caeleb Dressel (GSC), 47.53
  4. Hunter Armstrong (NYAC), 47.59
  5. Destin Lasco (CAL), 47.90
  6. Macguire McDuff (FLOR), 48.04
  7. Ryan Held (NYAC), 48.05
  8. Matt King (TFA), 48.11

After the blazing-fast prelims of the men’s 100 free this morning, the semis did not disappoint as five men dipped under the 48-second barrier and it required 48.11 just to make it back to tomorrow’s final.

Leading things off in the first semi was Chris Guiliano, who continues to ride the huge wave of momentum he created at the beginning of the week in the 200 free as the Notre Dame product reeled off a new lifetime best, clocking a blistering 47.25.

Guiliano moves to #13 all-time in the event and #3 among Americans, downing his previous best of 47.49 set in February.

Hunter Armstrong closed like a freight train to touch 2nd to Guiliano in the heat, coming home in 24.45 to clock a new best time of 47.59 and advance 4th into the final.

All-Time Performers, Men’s 100 Freestyle (LCM)

  1. Pan Zhanle (CHN), 46.80 – 2024
  2. David Popovici (ROU), 46.86 – 2022
  3. Cesar Cielo (BRA), 46.91 – 2009
  4. Alain Bernard (FRA), 46.94 – 2009
  5. Caeleb Dressel (USA), 46.96 – 2019
  6. Cameron McEvoy (AUS), 47.04 – 2016
  7. Eamon Sullivan (AUS), 47.05 – 2008
  8. Kyle Chalmers (AUS) / Jack Alexy (USA), 47.08 – 2019 / 2024
  9. James Magnussen (AUS), 47.10 – 2012
  10. Kliment Kolesnikov (RUS), 47.11 – 2021
  11. Fred Bousquet (FRA), 47.15 – 2009
  12. Chris Guiliano (USA), 47.25 – 2024

The second semi did not disappoint either, as newly-minted U.S. Open Record holder Jack Alexy went head-to-head with defending Olympic champion Caeleb Dressel.

Alexy showed some jaw-dropping speed opening up, flipping under world record pace in 22.25 at the 50, but Dressel showed a bit of his patented late surge to make it close at the end, as Alexy touched in 47.33 and Dressel wasn’t too far behind in 47.53.

The time for Dressel is his fastest in two years and his 12th-quickest ever.

The U.S. now has four men inside the world’s top seven this season.

2023-2024 LCM Men 100 Free

WR 46.80
View Top 31»

Destin Lasco made it five men sub-48 in the semis with an impressive 47.90 clocking, just three one-hundredths off his best time.

Macguire McDuff chipped four one-hundredths off his lifetime best to make the final in 6th, touching in 48.04.


  • World Record: 1:50.34, Kristof Milak (HUN) – 2022 World Championships
  • American Record: 1:51.51, Michael Phelps – 2009 World Championships
  • U.S. Open Record: 1:52.20, Michael Phelps (USA) – 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials
  • World Junior Record: 1:53.79, Kristof Milak (hun) – 2017 European Junior Championships
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: 1:55.06, Zach Harting
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 1:55.78

Finals Qualifiers:

  1. Luca Urlando (DART), 1:54.64
  2. Thomas Heilman (CA-Y), 1:54.93
  3. Mason Laur (FLOR), 1:55.05
  4. Dare Rose (CAL), 1:55.25
  5. Jack Dahlgren (TRI), 1:55.65
  6. Colby Mefford (CAL), 1:55.72
  7. Zach Harting (CARD), 1:56.52
  8. Trenton Julian (MVN), 1:56.73

Luca Urlando put on an impressive display in the first semi of the men’s 200 fly, rolling to a decisive victory in a time of 1:54.64 to grab the top seed heading into tomorrow’s final.

The swim for Urlando, who spent time training at ASU recently but has announced his return to the NCAA next season at Georgia, is his fastest since 2022 and the 5th-quickest of his career.

He set a blistering pace early, out in 1:23.58 at the 150, but faded a bit over the final 50, splitting 31.06—something to watch for the final.

The second semi saw last year’s National champ and the 4th-place finisher at the World Championships, Thomas Heilman, execute a similar strategy to Urlando, going out fast and holding off the charge from the others coming home.

The 17-year-old was pressed by Florida’s Mason Laur but held on, touching in 1:54.93 for a new season-best and the #2 seed for the final. Laur followed up his PB in the prelims by bringing it down by .04 tonight, touching in 1:55.05 for 3rd overall.

Cal’s Dare Rose, former Mizzou star Jack Dahlgren and Cal’s Colby Mefford all set new personal bests themselves to advance in 4th, 5th and 6th, all sub-1:56.


  • World Record: 57.33, Kaylee McKeown (AUS) – 2023 World Cup – Budapest
  • American Record: 57.47, Regan Smith – 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials
  • U.S. Open Record: 57.47, Regan Smith (USA) – 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials
  • World Junior Record: 57.57, Regan Smith (USA) – 2019 World Championships
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: 58.35, Regan Smith
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 59.99
  1. Regan Smith (TXLA), 57.13 WR
  2. Katharine Berkoff (WOLF), 57.91
  3. Kennedy Noble (WOLF), 58.81
  4. Josephine Fuller (TENN), 59.03
  5. Rhyan White (WOLF), 59.07
  6. Phoebe Bacon (UW), 59.37
  7. Leah Shackley (BRY), 59.40
  8. Claire Curzan (TAC), 59.57

Regan Smith is once again the world record holder in the women’s 100 back.

Five years after she initially broke the mark in 2019, Smith reclaimed the record from Australia’s Kaylee McKeown with a flawless performance in front of a packed Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, storming to a time of 57.13 to knock two-tenths off McKeown’s all-time mark of 57.33 from last October.

“It was part of the plan,” Smith said in her post-race interview, referring to getting her world record back.

Coming into the meet having broken the American Record last month in 57.51, Smith lowered her National mark down to 57.47 in the semis before dropping this stunner tonight.

Split Comparison

McKeown, October 2023 Smith, Trials Semis Smith, Trials Final
28.15 28.02 27.94
57.33 (29.18) 57.47 (29.45) 57.13 (29.19)

She initially broke the world record in 2019, becoming the first woman under 58 seconds in 57.57. Now, five women have done so, including tonight’s runner-up, Katharine Berkoff.

All-Time Performers, Women’s 100 Backstroke (LCM)

  1. Kaylee McKeown (AUS), 57.33 – 2023 Budapest World Cup
  2. Regan Smith (USA), 57.47 – 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials
  3. Kylie Masse (CAN), 57.70 – 2021 Canadian Olympic Trials
  4. Katharine Berkoff (USA), 57.83 – 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials
  5. Mollie O’Callaghan (AUS), 57.88 – 2024 Australian Olympic Trials

Berkoff swam a lifetime best of 57.83 in the semis, and was just shy of that tonight in 57.91 to lock in the runner-up spot and an all-but-secured Olympic berth for the first time.

All-Time Performances, Women’s 100 Backstroke (LCM)

  1. Regan Smith, 57.13 — 2024 U.S. Trials – Final
  2. Kaylee McKeown, 57.33 — 2023 World Cup, Budapest
  3. Kaylee McKeown, 57.41 — 2024 Australian Trials
  4. Kaylee McKeown, 57.45 — 2021 Australian Trials
  5. Kaylee McKeown/Regan Smith, 57.47 — 2021 Olympics/2024 U.S Trials
  6. Regan Smith, 57.51 — 2024 NOVA Speedo Grand Challenge
  7. Kaylee McKeown, 57.53 — 2023 World Championships
  8. Kaylee McKeown/Regan Smith, 57.57 — 2024 NSW State Championships/2019 World Championships

Berkoff’s NC State teammate Kennedy Noble was the only other woman under 59 seconds in the final, picking up 3rd in 58.81. Noble set a seismic lifetime best of 58.55 in the prelims.

Tennesse’s Josephine Fuller broke 59 seconds for the first time in the heats and did so again in the semis, but was just off that tonight in 59.03, placing 4th ahead of Tokyo Olympic finalist Rhyan White (59.07).


  • World Record: 7:32.11 — Zhang Lin (CHN) — 2009 World Championships
  • American Record: 7:38.67 — Bobby Finke – 2023 World Championships
  • U.S. Open Record: 7:40.34 — Bobby Finke (USA) – 2023 U.S. National Championships
  • World Junior Record: 7:43.37 — Lorenzo Galossi (ITA) – 2022 European Championships
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: Bobby Finke, 7:48.22
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 7:51.65
  1. Bobby Finke (SPA), 7:44.22
  2. Luke Whitlock (FAST), 7:45.19
  3. Daniel Matheson (SUN), 7:49.34
  4. David Johnston (TST), 7:50.23
  5. Ross Dant (WOLF), 7:54.56
  6. Charlie Clark (OSU), 7:57.28
  7. Will Gallant (TST), 7:58.22
  8. Sean Green (LIAC), 7:59.01

The men’s 800 free looked slightly different than it has in the last three years at U.S. Trials, as defending Olympic champion Bobby Finke was pushed by the new kid on the block, Luke Whitlock.

Finke led throughout the race, but Whitlock kept things close, and coming down the final lap, Finke’s bread and butter, it was actually Whitlock who made up ground, closing in 28.50 to gain 65 one-hundredths on the American Record holder.

Finke held firm to book the win in 7:44.22, but Whitlock was less than a second back in 7:45.19, obliterating the boys’ 17-18 National Age Group Record by nearly three seconds.

Whitlock took down the NAG of 7:48.09 set by Larsen Jensen way back at the 2003 World Championships. In the 400 free earlier in the meet, Whitlock moved to #2 all-time in the 17-18 age group behind Jensen.

Sun Devil Swimming’s Daniel Matheson overtook The Swim Team’s David Johnston on the last 100 to snag 3rd in 7:49.34, knocking three seconds off his PB and joining the sub-7:50 cliub.


  • World Record: 51.71 – Sarah Sjostrom (SWE), 2017
  • American Record: 52.04 – Simone Manuel, 2019
  • U.S. Open Record: 52.54 – Simone Manuel (USA), 2018
  • World Junior Record: 52.70 – Penny Oleksiak (CAN), 2016
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: Abbey Weitzeil – 53.53
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 53.61

Finals Qualifiers:

  1. Torri Huske (AAC), 52.90
  2. Simone Manuel (SUN), 53.16
  3. Kate Douglass (NYAC), 53.21
  4. Gretchen Walsh (NAC), 53.33
  5. Abbey Weitzeil (CAL), 53.66
  6. Beata Nelson (UN-WI), 53.92
  7. Catie Deloof (NYAC), 53.98
  8. Erika Connolly (Brown) (TNAQ) / Anna Moesch (GSCY), 54.09**

**swim-off required

Torri Huske established herself as the woman to beat in tomorrow’s 100 free final, blasting the first sub-53 swim of the meet with a new lifetime best clocking of 52.90.

Huske, who already set a personal best and booked an Olympic ticket earlier in the meet in the 100 fly, chopped two one-hundredths off her previous best of 52.92 set at the 2022 World Championships. She had the fastest opening 50 in the field at 25.20, and won her semi-final comfortably, with Abbey Weitzeil more than three-quarters of a second back for the runner-up spot in 53.66.

The second heat was star-studded, but despite being flanked by the two Virginia mega stars Kate Douglass and Gretchen WalshSimone Manuel reminded everyone why she was the 2016 Olympic champion.

Manuel overtook Walsh on the second 50 to claim the heat in 53.16, qualifying 2nd into tomorrow’s final.

Douglass also moved past Walsh as both improved their times from the prelims, clocking 53.21 and 53.33 to advance 4th and 5th, respectively.

There ended up being a tie for 8th, as Tennessee’s Erika Connolly (Brown) and Greater Somerset County YMCA’s Anna Moesch produced matching 54.09s, meaning we’ll see a swim-off to determine who will claim Lane 8 tomorrow night.

Connolly owns a lifetime best of 53.42, while Moesch’s swim marks a new PB, her first in two years, having previously been 54.33 in 2022.

Moesch’s swim tonight also moves her into 7th all-time in the girls’ 17-18 age group.

Narrowly missing out in 10th was Laker Swimming’s Rylee Erisman, the fastest 15-year-old in history. Erisman held that distinction coming into the meet with her PB of 54.34 set in May, and lowered it down to 54.22 in the heats before registering 54.27 tonight.


  • World Record: 2:05.48 — Qin Haiyang (CHN), 2024
  • American Record: 2:07.17 — Josh Prenot, 2016
  • U.S. Open Record: 2:07.17 — Josh Prenot (USA), 2016
  • World Junior Record: 2:08.04 — Dong Zhihao (CHN), 2023
  • 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: Nic Fink — 2:07.55
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 2:09.68

Finals Qualifiers:

  1. Matt Fallon (UPN), 2:07.39
  2. AJ Pouch (VT), 2:08.00
  3. Josh Matheny (ISC), 2:08.79
  4. Jake Foster (RAYS), 2:09.57
  5. Daniel Roy (TDPS), 2:09.65
  6. Nic Fink (NYAC), 2:09.80
  7. Josh Bey (HHSC), 2:11.09
  8. Will Licon (TXLA), 2:11.14

Matt Fallon was visibly stunned with how fast he swam in the second semi of the men’s 200 breast, as the University of Pennsylvania product sat under American Record pace through the 150 before clocking in with a time of 2:07.39.

Fallon’s time takes down his previous best of 2:07.71 and makes him the 2nd-fastest American ever, overtaking Kevin Cordes, Eric ShanteauNic Fink and Will Licon. He now only trails Josh Prenot, who set the current AR of 2:07.17 at the 2016 Olympic Trials.

Fallon and Virginia Tech’s AJ Pouch were well ahead of the field in the second semi, with Fallon making the decisive move on the 3rd 50 to create a gap. Pouch kept pace coming home, finishing in a time of 2:08.00 for his second PB of the day after breaking 2:09 for the first time this morning in 2:08.25.

Indiana’s Josh Matheny topped the first semi in 2:08.79, within a half-second of his personal best 2:08.32 set at last year’s Nationals.

Jake FosterDaniel Roy and Fink all were in the 2:09s to qualify for tomorrow, while 17-year-old Josh Bey backed up his lifetime best of 2:11.02 from the prelims by clocking 2:11.09 to advance in 7th. Bey’s morning swim moved him to #6 all-time in the 17-18 age group.

Placing 9th overall was SwimMAC’s Jordan Willis, 17, who lowered his PB from the prelims by half a second in 2:11.26, maintaining the #9 ranking in the 17-18 NAG rankings.


  • World Record: 51.71 – Sarah Sjostrom (SWE), 2017
  • American Record: 52.04 – Simone Manuel, 2019
  • U.S. Open Record: 52.54 – Simone Manuel (USA), 2018
  • World Junior Record: 52.70 – Penny Oleksiak (CAN), 2016
  • 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Champion: Abbey Weitzeil – 53.53
  • 2024 Olympic Qualifying Time: 53.61
  1. Erika Connolly (TNAQ), 53.92
  2. Anna Moesch (GSCY), 54.28

Erika Connolly (Brown) unleashed her fastest swim in two years to secure a berth in tomorrow’s final of the women’s 100 freestyle, winning a swim-off against youngster Anna Moesch.

After the two produced matching 54.09s in the semis, a new PB for Moesch, Connolly put her foot down in the swim-off by clocking 53.92, her fastest since the 2022 Trials and more than a second faster than she was at last summer’s Nationals.

Moesch, 18, followed up her best time in the semis with the second-fastest swim of her career not long later here in the swim-off, touching in 54.28 to finish 9th overall. In 2021, Moesch was the runner-up in the 50 free at Wave I of the Olympic Trials to land a berth at the Wave II meet.

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1 month ago


Last edited 1 month ago by TJSWIMMER
1 month ago

After seeing the 100 free semis the women’s 400 medals relay becomes more and more a lock for gold! Would be great to finally win gold in the relay after missing out in Tokyo

Reply to  Swimfan
1 month ago

Why all the down vote? Don’t anyone think the American women will win the medley relay?

1 month ago

I think Regan is the clear favorite now, if Kaylee had lowered her record in the trials by at least one hundredth, I would think differently, but seeing that Regan took that step this year and it is the first time she has held the best mark in years, I bet on her clearly. Plus she looks invincible this year! Congratulations, it is more than deserved!

M d e
1 month ago

Kaylee v Regan has the potential to be the best 2 person race since Rome 2009 Mens 100 Fly.

Regan WR holder.

Kaylee former WR holder and reigning Olympic (and sort of world) Champ.

First person sub-57 is in play.

So exciting.

Reply to  M d e
1 month ago

This and Peaty x Qin..

1 month ago

USA should go FMMF in the MMR if Dressel is in 49 shape 🔥

Reply to  Swimmer.thingz
1 month ago

Even if Caeleb is in 49 shape there’s not a huge advantage to putting WR holder Regan on back so that Caeleb can swim fly instead of WR holder Gretchen, especially when you consider that Caeleb’s relay start isn’t that much better than his flat start, but Gretchen’s relay start is a lot better than her flat start. Add in the fact that it’s tough for women to get bounced around in the wake that the men make – so leading off with men and giving the women cleaner water is an advantage, I’m still in favor of MMFF. It might be different if it was a time trial in the middle of an empty pool with clean water.

Reply to  PineappleNoMore
1 month ago

You are overanalyzing it. Murphy has gone 52,2 while Regan has gone 57,17 ~ 5s differential, Gretchen has gone 55,18 and Dressel hasnt swam yet but he is likely in 49,8-50,4 shape, wich is almost the same 5s.

Reply to  mclovineta
1 month ago

But regan might suffer on the wall from the waves

Reply to  Rafael
1 month ago

In Tokyo, her fastest 100 backstroke of the meet was leading off the mixed medley relay next to men. I don’t think that should be a concern.

Reply to  mclovineta
1 month ago

In which case you favour using your men in the front half to get clear water for your women.

Reply to  Swimmer.thingz
1 month ago

mixed relays are a made for TV joke
and a waste of great swimmers energy and focus!

1 month ago

How do you read Gretchen’s semifinal?

1 month ago

She opened slower than her 100 fly. I think she and Todd had a conversation about sending it—when and how to do it. I think she’s going to open with a bonkers split tomorrow.

1 month ago

I expected it to be faster. Her fly was better than her free last year though so maybe her free just isn’t as good.

Or maybe she didn’t want to peak in semis again so she saved up

1 month ago

Walsh, Manuel and Douglass all took it easy in the front half. Huske seemed like she went all out (or close to it).

Reply to  Troyy
1 month ago

I had a visual feeling that Walsh free technique (at least after the wall) is good, but nowhere newar her fly level.. Seems like it is not smooth enough (Like MOC swims), but also not Sjostrom rotation speed level also. Just seems a little weird if you see her stroke and compare to Manual for instance on the same frames

Last edited 1 month ago by Rafael
Reply to  Rafael
1 month ago

Agreed. Others have commented, especially about her right arm entry. I was also concerned about Kate’s “paddle-wheel” right arm at the end of the race. Bad form, breathing way too high.

Sherry Smit
1 month ago

Regan seems like a completely different person now. She is so much more confident, and carries herself so well in interviews. So happy to see her 57.1 swim, she’s definitely better than ever both in and out of the pool 😃

Alison England
Reply to  Sherry Smit
1 month ago

It’s fabulous to see, particularly after she was given such a hard time by US ‘fans’ in the past. It was very upsetting to see.

1 month ago

Dressel went out in 22.93 in both the heats and semis. He’s going to need to bring back that front-end speed (22.6 or better) if he wants top 2.

Reply to  AquaNerd
1 month ago

Are we sure he has that kind of speed?

Mean Dean
Reply to  AquaNerd
1 month ago

He clearly had a lot more speed than he was letting on in the semis

Reply to  AquaNerd
1 month ago

I think he’s going to come home in 24.4 tomorrow. Based on the pop in his start, I think opening in 22.7 / 22.6 is a real possibility… maybe even 22.5.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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