Disclaimer: Dolfin 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 Dolfin 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 looks like the postseason has started early for Dean Farris.
The Harvard junior put up times at this weekend’s Harvard-Yale-Princeton triangular that would stand up at the NCAA Championships. The much-hyped meet is a major part of the Ivy League calendar, and if this early speed is any indication, we’re in for a great NCAA postseason.
Farris had five big-league swims over the two-day meet. (You can read our full meet recap here). Here’s a listing of all of Farris’s swims, from Robert Gibbs‘ meet recap:
- 18.35 – 200 free relay split
- 44.62 – 100 back (best time)
- 40.85 – 400 medley relay anchor
- 41.92 – 100 free (best time)
- 41.91 – 400 free relay split
For our Swim of the Week, we’ll focus in on that 100 free split of 40.85. Not only is it more than a second faster than Farris went in his individual 100s, it’s 1.2 seconds faster than Farris’s previous personal best. The split is also about seven tenths faster than Farris split at NCAAs last year.
In fact, 40-point splits are exceedingly rare. At NCAAs last year, only four men broke 41 seconds in a relay split and only one did it individually. Here’s the list of swimmers who split 40-point at NCAAs last year. All swims were from finals unless otherwise noted:
- Caeleb Dressel, Florida – 40.15 (400 free prelims), 40.25 (400 free) 40.27 (400 medley prelims)
- Blake Pieroni, Indiana – 40.62 (400 medley), 40.77 (400 free), 40.95 (400 medley prelims)
- Justin Ress, NC State – 40.35 (400 free prelims), 40.62 (400 free), 40.82 (400 medley)
- Robert Howard, Alabama – 40.82 (400 medley)
Farris’s big 100 frees beg the question of whether the star 200 freestyler will give up the 200 back at NCAAs this year in favor of the 100 free. Farris finished 7th in the 200 back last year, but the top 4 all return. Meanwhile 100 free champ Dressel is graduated along with runner-up Ryan Held and fourth-place Pieroni. In fact, Farris’s new season-best of 41.92 would have been 11th at NCAAs last year and ranks #2 nationwide this season.
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