Efimova to Test the Waters at LA Invite Prior to Competing in Rio

2016 Los Angeles Invitational

The University of Southern California’s Uytengsu Aquatic Center is bracing itself for 1000 swimmers competing in the 2016 version of the annual Los Angeles Invitational, beginning this Thursday and running through Sunday. One of the biggest names on the psych sheet is that of Russia’s Yuliya Efimova, who is expected to compete in her first meet since the lifting of her FINA ban for testing positive for the banned substance Meldonium earlier this year. Efimova is entered in the 100 breast, 200 breast, and 50 free.

Photo: Anne Lepesant

Photo: Anne Lepesant

Efimova is now 2nd in the world rankings for both the 100 breast (with 1:05.70, trailing Lilly King by .50) and the 200 breast (with 2:21.41, 1.8 seconds behind Rie Kaneto of Japan). While she has recently entered several meets that she ended up not swimming, Efimova is expected to show up at LAI given that she was recently affirmed to compete in Rio.

With 1000 competitors, the meet will be flighted on Friday and Saturday. In addition to the USC athletes for whom this is a “home meet”, LAI attracts swimmers from some of the bigger Southern California clubs (e.g., Irvine Novaquatics and Irvine Aquazots, Mission Viejo Nadadores, and Canyon Aquatics), Arizona clubs such as Tucson Ford, and clubs from San Diego, Northern California, and the East Coast, as a stop on their summer circuits leading up to Nationals/US Open.

The meet begins on Thursday with 200 free relay (M,W), prelims of women’s 800 free and men’s 1500 free, and 200 medley relay (M,W).

Friday’s events: W800 free final, 100 free (M,W), 200 fly (M,W), 200 back (M,W), W400 IM, and M400 free, 400 free relay (M,W).

Saturday’s events: M1500 free final, W200 IM, M200 free, 200 breast (M,W), 50 free, W400 free, M400 IM, 800 free relay.

Sunday’s events: 100 fly (M,W), W1500 free, 100 back (M,W), M800 free, 100 breast (M,W), W200 free, M200 IM, 400 medley relay (M,W).

Some of the other big names in the meet include: Vlad Morozov, Nikita Lobintsev, Alex Suhrokov, Long Guitierrez, Katrina Konopka, Katy Campbell, Cristian Quintero, Mike Alexandrov, Farida Osman, Katie McLaughlin, Nick Thorne, and Azad Al-barazi.

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I wonder what the crowd reception will be like


I thought Salo said he wasn’t training her?

He’s got some ‘splainin to do!

Alec – Dave Salo reiterated to us today that Efimova is still not training with him and Trojan Swim Club. She’s apparently in LA but has found a different place to train

Lane Four

Where? Walgreens Pharmacy pool?

Irish Ringer

Are the other Russian swimmers training with Salo?


Morozov and Lobinstev I think


Does BALCO own a pool?

Billy B.

Pretty sure its over in the area. Its nicknamed the chemical pool of dreams.


she trains with her father at different pools that they have lanes open, sometimes long beach sometimes golden west. it all depends.


I usually don’t advocate such things, but PLEASE boo her. Its simply unjust to all her other competitors.

bobo gigi

If so, please don’t forget to boo most of MLB and NFL players too. 🙂

King in da norf

When almost all players are doping, then is it so much as cheating?
MLB and NFL are public entertainment anyway (modern day gladiators show), not so much as sport.

Attila the Hunt

I did not forget to boo Camille Muffat in 2012

Captain Awesome

I don’t seem to remember Muffat being caught for doping, but either way, this is in poor taste.

Attila the Hunt

Is the Bobo’s (passive aggressive) way better and in good taste?

“I just wonder how these swimmers like Hosszu, Seebohm or Larkin can swim best times or close to best times almost each time they swim.
Same questions about someone like Gatlin on track who can run times in the 100m about 9.80 every week from May to September.”


Justin Gatlin has been banned twice for doping offenses
Katinka Hosszu has been accused for taking banned substances in a blog published by Swimming World.

Coach Mike 1952

I would not put much stock in the SW article. Some of us called them out on it big time.

Attila the Hunt

You missed the point.
Bobo asked the same question about Hosszu, Larkin and Seebohm as he did Gatlin.

Do I really need to spell it out?

Lane Four

Not for me, but for others, yes.


Michael Andrew does the same. It might be a different training style. Both Hosszu and Andrew also seem to race constantly so wondering if their training techniques have them always at peak levels versus the traditional heavy training and taper process?

Billy B.

A great athlete can perform great on the big stage. A doped athlete can perform at the same level all year if doping is done smart… taking their vitamins at the right levels and such. I mean if Phelps and Lochte simply had similar Growth Hormone and Testosterone levels as their prime… we wouldn’t see them flailing to survive (very relatively of course) at the end of their taxing programs. For some perspective. Look at Cross Fit. It is the posterchild for pushing athletes to REQUIRE doping just to compete at a high level… sad. I see guys at the gym who have clearly been ODing on stimulants and/or hormones now that I do lots of weights… their health goes… Read more »


Bobo, have you never been to any sports game live? Everyone that’s been publicly caught on PEDs gets savagely boo’d.


The NFL actually suspends people for failing, as does the MLB, the UFC just pulled their beat fighter off their biggest card in history for a doping violation.

Unfortunately swimming is behind the curve.


I think booing her is worse than the situation. It’s not really her fault that she’s back in and I think it would ruin the Olympic belief

Zika Ziki

What do you mean by Olympic belief?
Is this Olympic belief also shared by Efimova and does she abide by it?




Just a matter of respect as well. Booing her would be disgusting and steal limelight from other athletes.

If she willingly took a banned substance and then appealed when she failed yet another doping test, then it is sort of her fault.

Lane Four

Absolutely, Lauren.


tested too early she took it before it was banned

Big Time

its time for the public to put some pressure on. The disrespect she and other cheats show to their competitors, the sport and the people who love to watch the best compete with the best is a kick in the teeth. Just picture her jumping on to the podium snatching the 1st place medal and pushing the girl who worked her butt off to the ground.

Why should she and others get away with it? My thoughts? When the finals are announced- cheer like crazy for the other 7 women and let’s hear *crickets*for her. Or turn your back.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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