Alsader Breaks 11-12 National Age Group Record

For the second straight summer, Yezan Alsader from the WAVES of the Bloomington-Normal YMCA in Illinois, traveled to Fort Myers, Florida for a summer shot at the Gulf Coast Swim Team Summer Invitational, and for the second straight summer, he won the 400 (long course meter) IM in the 11-12 age group.

This year, Alsader won the race in a new National Age Group Record. He swam a 4:54.24 to break the 4:54.92 set by Nicholas Caldwell in 2006. Poetically, Alsader flew across the country to break that record at a meet hosted by the club Caldwell swam for when he set the record, the Gulf Coast Swim Team. Caldwell would go on to become an All-American at Florida, and will transfer to Wisconsin next fall.

His splits were:

Fly – 1:05.37
Back – 1:13.87
Breast – 1:28.89
Free – 1:06.11

This time was swum in an afternoon prelim, with evening finals sessions yet to be swum. Live results are not available for the meet this year on the internet, but they are available on Meet Mobile.

Update: Alsader was a 4:57.24 in finals, so he failed to break the record again

He is coached by Heather Fort, the Head Age Group Coach of the WAVES team.

This swim was a bit out of nowhere for Alsader, at least to outside observers. His previous best time of 5:07.10 was done two months ago, so this was a 13 second drop for him.

He also swam 9:02.54 in the 800 free on Thursday night, which ranks him 4th all-time in the age group; a 2:06.31 in the 200 free, and a 2:21.85 in the 200 backstroke.

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To add another spin to the story, his coach, Heather Fort, is the daughter of GCST head coach Don Henshaw (who coached Caldwell at GCST when he set the record).

bobo gigi

They have 2 other great young talents in the same club with Melissa Pish and Grace Ariola. Melissa Pish, 13, has swum 8.54.02 in the 800 free and 2.05.60 in the 200 free.
Grace Ariola, who just turned 13, is a star in the making on backstroke. She has swum 2.18.67 in the 200 back.
Interesting meet with many young talents and also a “veteran” with Melanie Margalis.
Results from Thursday
Results from Friday

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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