Disclaimer: BlueSeventy 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 BlueSeventy Swim 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.
It’s been quite a week of 100 backstrokes for 15-year-old Regan Smith.
Heading into the World Junior Championships as one of Team USA’s best-known and most-entered swimmers – and also the only American pool swimmer to compete at both senior and junior Worlds this summer – Smith was just a few tenths off the junior world record in the 100 back and had already broken that record in the 200 at Worlds, though another swimmer broke it again in the final.
Then within a week, Smith put up the four best 100 backstrokes in her career – two of them faster than any junior in history.
In the individual 100 back, Smith tripled up times of 59.52, 59.41 and 59.11 through heats, semis and finals, respectively. That earned her a World Juniors gold medal and a new junior world record. Then in the mixed 4×100 medley relay, Smith was 58.95 to become the first junior to break 59 since the start of junior world records and the fastest 15-16 age grouper in American history.
Smith passes up Missy Franklin‘s 15-16 National Age Group record with a full year still left in the age group. Franklin’s lifetime-best is the NAG one age group up: a 58.33 she pulled while winning the London Olympics at age 17.
And Smith still has one likely 100 back swim left in the meet, with the women’s medley relay tonight. Smith could conceivably swim fly as the top American there, but based on her progression throughout this meet, if she leads off tonight, we might just see another 58-second swim from the Riptide Rocket.
WE MAKE SWIMMERS.
There isn’t a second that goes by when the team at blueseventy aren’t thinking about you. How you eat, breathe, train, play, win, lose, suffer and celebrate. How swimming is every part of what makes you tick. Aptly named because 70% of the earth is covered in water, blueseventy is a world leader in the pool and open water. Since 1993, we design, test, refine and craft products using superior materials and revolutionary details that equate to comfort, freedom from restriction and ultimately a competitive advantage in the water. This is where we thrive. There is no substitute and no way around it. We’re all for the swim.
Visit blueseventy.com/pages/swim to learn more.
blueseventy is a SwimSwam partner.