2016 U.S. Open Swimming Championships
- Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center, The University of Minnesota
- August 2nd – August 6th
- Meet Info
- Psych Sheet
- Meet Central
- Live Results Will Be Available Closer to the Beginning of Competition
The 2016 U.S. Open is set to begin on Tuesday August 2nd, a meet that will feature many of America’s best who aren’t attending the 2016 Olympics, as well as plenty of international competition using this as their taper meet for the summer. The meet will garner plenty of attention throughout the swim community as it only overlaps with the Olympic swimming competition on August 6th, the final day of competition.
Here’s a look at four major storylines heading into the meet:
1. After Being Rejected In Olympic Bid, Arkady Vyatchanin Continues On
After his bid to represent Serbia at the 2016 Olympics in Rio was officially blocked by FINA back in May, two-time Olympic medallist Arkady Vyatchanin continues his swim career at the US Open. Vyatchanin, a three-time Olympian for his native Russia, left the country due to government issues (the recent doping scandal in Russia suggests he made the right decision) and proceeded to seek an Olympic bid with Serbia, but was ultimately rejected for failing to meet strict residency and competition rules (read about it here).
Already 32 years of age, Vyatchanin went onto say he is looking to change nationalities once again, hinting it will be the United States, and sounding confident if he can focus strictly on the pool without other distraction he could be a factor in 2020. Vyatchanin will swim both the 100 and 200 backstroke events in Minneapolis, both of which he is the top seed.
Vyatchanin owns best times of 52.57 and 1:54.75, both from 2009, and won Olympic bronze in both events at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.
2. After Near Misses at Trials, Bethany Galat Headlines Women’s Competition
After two third place finishes and three finals appearances at the US Olympic Trials, Texas A&M’s Bethany Galat (currently representing the Aggie Swim Club) headlines the women’s side of the meet, entered in four events and is the top seed in two of them.
Galat had a breakout meet at Trials, earning massive personal best times in the 200 breast (2:24.52) and the 400 IM (4:37.69) to finish 3rd overall in both, missing the Olympic team by 0.13 and 0.88 respectively. Despite the near misses one had to marvel at her improvement, as she was seeded 19th in the 400 IM and 26th in the 200 breast, taking off a combined 12 seconds between the two races. She also placed 6th in the 200 IM, putting her on the radar as one of USA’s swimmers of the future.
She’s entered in four races in Minneapolis: the 100 and 200 breast and the 200 and 400 IM. Galat is seeded 1st in the 200 breast and 400 IM, 2nd in the 200 IM and 7th in the 100 breast. It will be interesting to see what kind of times she puts up after taking off so much in Omaha.
3. Michael Andrew Entered In Seven Events
Someone else who had a strong showing in Omaha despite not making the team was 17 year-old Michael Andrew, who is entered in a whopping seven events here in Minneapolis. Andrew placed 4th in the 100 breaststroke at the Trials, shattering the 17-18 NAG for the fifth straight time and also became the youngest American ever under 1:00 in the event. He also qualified for three other semi-finals in the 50 free (11th), 100 fly (15th) and 200 IM (6th, though he scratched the final).
Andrew’s seven entries aren’t a huge surprise by any means, he’s been known to enter a lot of events. Most notably was the 2015 Junior World Championships where he competed in eight individual events and swam a total of 24 races over the six day meet. He’ll compete in his five best events: the 50 free, 100 back, 100 breast, 100 fly and 200 IM, seeded 2nd in all except the 100 back where he’s 3rd. He’ll also swim two events we don’t typically see him in that often: the 200 back and 200 breast. Andrew is seeded with times of 2:06.81 and 2:19.68, though his best times are 2:03.69 and 2:16.76.
4. Plenty of International Competition
Along with Vyatchanin, there will be plenty of international competition competing in Minneapolis. Australia has brought a strong team, with many in contention to land on the podium multiple times. Among the names competing are William Stockwell (50, 100 fr), Nicholas Brown (200 fly), and Zac Incerti (100 bk) on the men’s side and Shayna Jack (50, 100 fr), Jessica Hansen (100, 200 br), and Sian Whitaker (100, 200 bk) on the women’s side.
There are many swimmers competing from Great Britain, including Nicholas Grainger (200, 400 fr), Daniel Jervis (1500 fr), and Calum Jarvis (100, 200 fr). Another notable name is Brazilian Vinicius Lanza, who competes for Indiana University in the NCAA. Lanza is the top seed in the 100 fly and 3rd in the 200 fly.
Other Notable Names Competing in Minneapolis:
- Maxime Rooney
- Zane Grothe
- Andrew Wilson
- Michael Weiss
- Zach Harting
- Joshua Fleagle
- Trevor Carroll
- PJ Ransford
- True Sweetser
- Robert Owen
- Max Williamson
- Sarah Gibson
- Claire Donahue
- Hellen Moffitt
- Ali Deloof
- Brooke Zeiger
- Miranda Tucker
- Andee Cottrell
- Madisyn Cox
- Hannah Saiz
- Mallory Comerford
- Eva Merrell
- Sierra Schmidt
- Courtney Harnish
- Olivia Anderson
- Lisa Bratton