Abbey Weitzeil blows away Simone Manuel NAG with 21.49 in the 50 free

Leading off the 200 free relay for the Canyons Aquatic Club, high school senior Abbey Weitzeil broke the 17-18 National Age Group record in the 50 free with a blazing 21.49.

That makes her the fastest junior (under-18) performer in history in the event, bettering the 21.59 put up by Simone Manuel just a few weeks ago.

Manuel, a freshman at Stanford, and likely the best sprinter in the NCAA, officially holds the 17-18 NAG record at 21.70, though her 21.59 from the Art Adamson Invite in November would have supplanted that record, barring any complications.

Now, though, Weitzeil’s time will better both of those swims.

The list of accolades to go with Weitzeil’s swim are long, and behind all of it is the backdrop of Weitzeil’s crazy December so far. The 18-year-old flew to Doha, Qatar at the beginning of the month to compete at the Short Course World Championships for Team USA. She wrapped up that meet by taking the Mixed 4×50 medley relay from 3rd to 1st, winning World Championship gold and breaking a world record in the process.

She then flew back the United States, and is almost certainly still dealing with some level of jet-lag, having not been back in the States for even a full week yet. But Weitzeil has been red-hot this week, turning heads with a 45.8 split on the Canyons 400 medley relay and now blowing up the NAG record books with this leadoff leg.

Weitzeil’s swim check in just outside the top 10 performances of all-time, for any age, and she becomes the 5th-fastest performer in history:

All-Time Top Performers: Women’s 50 yard Freestyle

1. Lara Jackson, 21.27
2. Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, 21.34
3. Natalie Coughlin, 21.46
4. Liv Jensen, 21.48
5. Abbey Weitzeil, 21.49

Just as exciting is the fact that Weitzeil will tangle with Manuel multiple times in college, as both will swim in the Pac-12 with Cal and Stanford, respectively, perhaps the two favorites for the next several NCAA titles. Pac-12 swim fans can look forward to watching multiple conference- and national-level battles between perhaps the two best young sprinting talents in American history.

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7 years ago

can we get a split breakdown? Kinda want to see where the difference was.

7 years ago

Judging by the way things are going for Weitzeil it would seem she should pull a Ledecky and take some interest in deferring. Her and her coach have a good thing going–why mess with it heading into the Olympics!

7 years ago

Why has she not swam any individual events at Jr’s?

Peter Davis
7 years ago

She is the best I’ve ever seen from about yard 10 to yard 50(or yard 100). She was even with the field at the breakout. She will only improve, IMO, in the future. Now, it may take a while before we see her so fast again, as she is clearly on fire right meow. But she has a great coach, and significant room for improvement from the blocks to the breakout.

Personally, with Manuel swimming under Meehan, and Weitzeil swimming under Stickels, I think they are in a dead heat for who will be the first woman under :21. Those are two talented athletes and two talented coaches.

I also tend to agree with the “deferring” sentiment, when… Read more »

7 years ago

Believe it or not, this was all powered by the Grand Slam: 2 Eggs, 2 Strips of Bacon, 2 Sausage Links, and a Short Stack of Pancakes. This lil’ bear knows how to enjoy a quality meal for a fraction of the cost!

Peter Davis
Reply to  Niemannator
7 years ago

Am I dating myself if I say: “$1.99 are you out of your mind!”

Heheh….’dating myself.’ That’d be an awkward break-up.

bobo gigi
7 years ago

WOW! 21.49! 😯
Abbey has such power with her straight-arm technique.
The 50 free is her best event right now but I can’t wait to see her 100 free lead-off leg tonight in the 4X100 free relay. Something very special isn’t out of reach. 46.50?
She swims only the relays this week so she’s fresh to perform. And on sprint, the fresher you are, the faster you go.
With Simone Manuel and Abbey Weitzeil USA has 2 top world-class sprinters for the next 10 years.

bobo gigi
7 years ago

She goes so fast in the water and emits such a strong magnetic field that she caused a big power failure in the pool on Thursday and a live stream crash on the USA swimming website yesterday. 🙂
Be prepared for any eventuality tonight! :mrgreen:

bobo gigi
7 years ago

Her relay performances with Canyons Aquatic Club in video.

Women’s 4X50 medley relay. LANE 3. 21.19 anchor leg split

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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