arena Swim of the Week: Maximus Williamson Scorches Home For 2:01.45 In 200 IM

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Disclaimer: Swim of the Week is not meant to be a conclusive selection of the best overall swim of the week, but rather one Featured Swim to be explored in deeper detail. The Swim of the Week is an opportunity to take a closer look at the context of one of the many fast swims this week, perhaps a swim that slipped through the cracks as others grabbed the headlines, or a race we didn’t get to examine as closely in the flood of weekly meets.

Maximus Williamson is one of the brightest up-and-coming stars in American swimming, and that was on full display at the U.S. International Team Trials in Greensboro.

At the tail-end of an extremely busy five days of competition that saw the 15-year-old race 12 times across seven different events, Williamson saved his best for last on Saturday night.

The North Texas Nadadore came back from fourth place at the 150-meter turn to win the men’s 200 IM ‘C’ final in a time of 2:01.45, using an absolutely scintillating final length of freestyle to do so.

Williamson’s closing 50 split was 27.73—a freestyle leg usually reserved for only the elite of the elite. For example, no one in the ‘A’ or ‘B’ final was sub-28 coming home (Trenton Julian did split 27.92 in the prelims). At last summer’s Olympic Games, only gold and silver medalists Wang Shun and Duncan Scott cracked 28 on the freestyle in the final.

The free leg was sensational, but Williamson’s overall time also was of great significance. 2:01.45 makes him the fastest American 15-year-old in history, and rockets him up to #7 all-time in the boy’s 15-16 age group.

All-Time U.S. 15-Year-Olds, Men’s 200 IM (LCM)

  1. Maximus Williamson (NTN), 2:01.45 – 2022
  2. Tim Connery (MAC), 2:01.92 – 2018
  3. Carson Foster (RAYS), 2:01.97 – 2017
  4. Michael Phelps (NBAC), 2:02.17 – 2001
  5. Sean Grieshop (NITRO), 2:02.60 – 2014

All-Time 200 IM Rankings, Boys’ 15-16 Age Group (LCM)

  1. Carson Foster (RAYS), 1:59.45 – 2018
  2. Andrew Seliskar (NCAP), 1:59.84 – 2013
  3. Michael Andrew (RPC), 1:59.86 – 2015
  4. Luca Urlando (DART), 2:00.34 – 2019
  5. Michael Phelps (NBAC), 2:00.86 – 2001
  6. Kyle Whitaker (DUNE), 2:01.27 – 2008
  7. Maximus Williamson (NTN), 2:01.45 – 2022
  8. Tim Connery (MAC), 2:01.58 – 2019
  9. Sean Grieshop (NITRO), 2:01.83 – 2015
  10. David Nolan (HAC), 2:02.19 – 2009

Williamson’s swim also marked a sizeable best time. In the prelims, he clocked 2:03.34 to erase his previous best of 2:06.36 by over three seconds, and then he took almost another two seconds in the final. Overall he dropped nearly five seconds in one day.

Split Comparison

His breaststroke leg has improved by more than two seconds in the months since he set that previous best last summer, while he managed to improve across all strokes from prelims to finals in Greensboro:

Williamson, July 2021 Williamson, Prelims Williamson, Final
26.95 26.74 26.23
57.48 (30.53) 57.02 (30.28) 56.18 (29.93)
1:37.47 (39.99) 1:34.76 (37.74) 1:33.72 (37.56)
2:06.36 (28.89) 2:03.34 (28.58) 2:01.45 (27.73)

He also set new best times in his six other events in Greensboro (all-time ranking among U.S. 15-year-olds in brackets):

  • 50 free – 23.67 (t-31st)
  • 100 free – 50.69 (6th)
  • 200 free – 1:50.65 (4th)
  • 100 back – 56.16 (9th)
  • 200 back – 1:58.75 (2nd)
  • 400 IM – 4:20.01 (2nd)

After a phenomenal week of racing, Williamson is expected to be named to the U.S. team for the Junior Pan Pacific Championships, which will run August 24-27 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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Pvdh
16 days ago

Seesh. Phelps went from 2:02 -> 1:59 -> 1:56.0 from 01 -> 02 – > 03. His rate of improvement across the flys, frees, IM, and even backstroke in the early days was insane.

Ol' Longhorn
16 days ago

Obviously listening to Rowdy saying “He’s breathing to his right!” too much.

thezwimmer
17 days ago

He needs to teach our top boys how to come home under 28 (insert MA joke here)

top 5000 high school recruit (committed)
17 days ago

notice how williamson came home in a 27. not a 32

zyzz brah
17 days ago

Battle of the freshman: Heilman or Maximus 😦

LBWIM
17 days ago

Just a heads up, in the photo you reference Heilman, not Williamson.

Justasillylittleguy
Reply to  LBWIM
17 days ago

His cap reads North Texas Nadadores. Unless they had the incorrect image before, this one is right.

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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