Born Dec. 3, 1996 Abbey Weitzeil is an American powerhouse sprinter originally from Saugus, Calif. Weitzel is what she calls a “newbie” to swimming — when she broke her first American Record, she had only been swimming for six years. She spent a few years of her life in Sacramento, and joined a recreation team, but decided the sport wasn’t for her. When her family returned to southern California in Santa Clarita at 12 years old, she joined a club team. Weitzel had raw talent, and nearly made her Junior National cut at just 13 years old.
High school swimming
Weitzel attended Saugus High School, where she was an eight-time CIF Southern California Swimming Division I Champion. She won two titles every year in high school — she set national high school records as junior in both the 50 and 100-yard freestyles. But during her senior year she broke her own records, and dropped her 100-free time to nearly a 46-second swim. With all of her accomplishments, she was also awarded the CalHiSports Division I Girls Athlete of the Year. After all this success as a prep swimmer, Weitzel committed to the University of California, Berkeley after looking at University of Arizona, but she chose to defer her enrollment one year in hopes of Rio 2016.
2012 U.S. Olympic Trials
At just 14 years old, and with only two years club experience under her belt, Weitzel qualified for the 2012 Olympic Trials in the 100-meter free.
After winning the 50-meter free title at a Junior National competition, Weitzel made her first National Junior Team of her career. The experience allowed her to travel out of the country for the first time and set her up for her future career. Weitzel competed at the 2013 FINA World Championships in Dubai, where she won a gold as a member of the mixed 400-meter free relay and a bronze on the 400-meter free relay.
2014 Pan Pacs
Weitzel finished fifth in the 50-meter free and fourth in the 100-meter free at the 2014 Phillips 66 Nationals, which placed her on both the Pan Pac and 2015 World Championship rosters. At Pacs Weitzel finished 10th in the 100-meter free, but she won silver as a member of the 400-meter free relay.
In Dec. 2014 Weitzel transitioned from a top college recruit to the fastest 100-meter freestyle swimmer in American history. She broke the record at the Junior National Championships in Federal Way, Wash., setting the first American Record swum at a Junior National meet.
Weitzel’s 46.29 was a relay leadoff, which is rare on its own, and the record put her as the 17th teenager in history to hold the record in that event.
2016 US Olympic Trials
Weitzeil became a first time Olympian by winning the 100M Freestyle. Her time of 53.28 bested second place finisher, Simone Manuel, by .24 seconds, and broke the US Record previously held by Cate Campbell. Her top finisher also puts her on the 4x100M Free Relay.
Weitzeil won her second event, the 50M Free, with a time of 24.28, just .05 seconds ahead of second place finisher Simone Manuel.
2016 Rio Olympics
Weitzel finished seventh in the finals of the 100M Free with a time of 53.30. She swam the fastest split on the 4X100M Free Relay for the US Team that finished Second, setting a new American Record. teaming with Simone Manuel, Dana Vollmer and Katie Ledecky. Weitzeil also swam on the 4X100M medley Relay in the heats, thereby receiving a Gold Medal when the US Team won in the Finals. Weitzeil failed to qualify for the finals of the 50M Free finishing sixth in semifinal heat 2.