2018 U.S. NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Wednesday, July 25 – Sunday, July 29, 2018
- William Woollett Aquatics Center, Irvine, CA
- Prelims 9 AM / Finals 6 PM (U.S. Pacific Time)
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Reported by Lauren Neidigh.
MEN’S 400 FREE:
- World Record: Paul Biedermann, 3:40.07, 2009
- American Record: Larsen Jensen, 3:42.78, 2008
- Championship Record: 3:43.53, Larsen Jensen, 2008
- U.S. Open Record: 3:43.53, Larsen Jensen, 2008
- GOLD: Zane Grothe– 3:46.53
- SILVER: Grant Shoults– 3:46.90
- BRONZE: Chris Wieser– 3:48.92
- FOURTH: Zach Yeadon– 3:49.09
It was an extremely close race down the stretch between Zane Grothe and Grant Shoults. Grothe, who set the American Record in the 500 free this season, has secured his spot on Pan Pacs, taking off in the final 100 to distance himself from Shoults. That was a nearly 2 second drop for Pac-12 champion Shoults, and he’s a strong contender to make Worlds in this race now. Grothe is still the favorite for that Worlds squad. His best is a 3:44.43 from last summer’s nationals, and he’s the 7th fastest American ever.
After his breakthrough prelims swim, Arizona’s Chris Wieser (3:48.92) was just a few tenths shy of his morning time to take 3rd, running down Zach Yeadon. Wieser is in a position to possibly make Pan Pacs in this. Yeadon had a strong swim from lane 8. He was leading halfway, but fell off the pace, finishing 4th in 3:49.09. That was over a 2 second drop and he’s now dropped 4 seconds today.
World Junior champion Andrew Abruzzo and World Juniors medalist Trey Freeman battled for 5th. Both were a bit off their prelims times, but Freeman (3:49.90) held off Abruzzo (3:50.04) on the final 100. Abruzzo became the 5th fastest American 17-18 year old ever in the event this morning, while Freeman moved to #8 on that list.