Jarod Arroyo And Miriam Sheehan Selected To Represent Puerto Rico At Tokyo 2020

Jarod Arroyo and Miriam Sheehan have been confirmed as Puerto Rico’s 2 representatives for the sport of swimming at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The Puerto Rican Swimming Federation announced that Arroyo and Sheehan were officially invited to the Games based on the universality rules. The universality rule allows up to 2 athletes (1 male, 1 female) to be invited to the Games if they have hit a FINA B standard and no swimmers in the country have hit a FINA A cut.

Arroyo, who swims under Bob Bowman at Arizona State, was invited to race the men’s 200 and 400 IM in Tokyo based on his recent swims of 2:00.61 and 4:16.63. Those swims for Arroyo at the recent Puerto Rico International Open got him under the respective FINA B cuts of 2:03.26 and 4:21.46 while trailing the FINA A standards of 1:59.67 in the 200 and 4:15.84 in the 400. The 4:16.63 performance in the 400 IM also marked a new Puerto Rican national record for Arroyo, improving upon the previous mark of 4:16.67.

Sheehan, on the other hand, was invited to race the women’s 100 freestyle in Tokyo based on her 55.99 swim at the 2021 Puerto Rico International Swimming Open. That swim was just under the 56.01 FINA A qualifying cut in the event but was a bit over the FINA A of 54.38. Sheehan’s swim also got her within a second of Vanessa Garcia‘s 55.00 Puerto Rican national record in the event.

Sheehan was born and raised in Arizona and trains with the Phoenix Swim Club in Paradise Valley, Arizona. Sheehan recently raced the 100 freestyle at the 2021 South American Swimming Championships where she posted the 3rd fastest time of 56.59, trailing Anicka Delgado’s 55.97 and Isabella Arcila’s 56.01.

Arroyo and Sheehan both represented Puerto Rico internationally in 2019 at the World Championships and Junior World Championships, respectively. At the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju, Arroyo raced to 18th place overall in the 400 IM with a 4:18.94 and to 24th in the 200 IM with a 2:01.54. He also swam the men’s 400 freestyle and placed 30th in a time of 2:00.28.

Sheehan on the other hand swam for Puerto Rico at the 2019 World Junior Championships in Budapest and raced to a 42nd place finish in the women’s 100 freestyle with a 57.70. Sheehan’s new PB of 55.99 would have placed 15th overall at 2019 World Juniors and would have gotten her 36th in the event at the 2019 World Championships.

Puerto Rico has never won a medal for swimming at the Olympic Games. The country’s best performer at the Games in recent history was Ricardo Busquets at the 1996 Games. There, Busquets made it to the final of both the 50 and 100 freestyles, placing 8th (22.73) and 7th (49.68), respectively. At the most recent Games in 2016, Puerto Rico was represented by only 1 swimmer in the form of Vanessa García. García raced the women’s 50 freestyle and placed 22nd overall with a 24.94 national record.

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Hswimmer
4 months ago

Awesome

Klorn8d
4 months ago

Kristen Romano was way further under the 200 IM B cut than Sheehan was under the 100 free. Seems kinda bogus

Math
Reply to  Klorn8d
4 months ago

It’s usually based on Fina points not just seconds.

Eastern Coach
Reply to  Math
4 months ago

It doesn’t seem so in this case. Romano 200 IM 855 fina points. Sheehan 100 Free less than 800 fina points. Fishy?

Mike
Reply to  Eastern Coach
4 months ago

Yes there were many things that were very fishy!! Rumor has it corruption runs deep in these small Caribbean nations for Olympic spots First, Miriam’s father is the head coach for Puerto Rico. Talk about a conflict of interest! The swimming federation was not upfront with Romano on the Universality cut off date. She was told that the CCCan event times would count toward Universality qualification. They also didn’t disclose the rule change making Mariam eligible for the universality rule (no worlds required). When the federation President and Vice president were put on the spot and asked why they were not forthcoming with all this information, their excuse was that they had a late notice of the change and didn’t… Read more »

Admin
Reply to  Mike
4 months ago

That’s one view.

However, taking Sheehan in this case is actually consistent with what FINA said of the Siphiwe Baleka case – that the Universality deadline is June 20, and times after that are too late for Universality consideration.

Mike
Reply to  Braden Keith
4 months ago

Yes Braden I agree with what you say about the Universality consideration but the Puerto Rican swimming federation never told Romano about that deadline? I wonder why.

Admin
Reply to  Mike
4 months ago

And that’s the same argument that Siphiwe made.

It’s just kind of a “we put out the rules” vs. “we didn’t understand the rules” debate. It’s become abundantly clear this year that lots of people don’t fully understand all of the nuance of the qualifying procedures.

LIGMA
Reply to  Math
4 months ago

2:12.86/855 > 55.99/787

Water Bug
Reply to  Klorn8d
4 months ago

Agreed, hope she is appealing this.

John Sullivan
Reply to  Klorn8d
4 months ago

Universality application deadline was June 20, 2021. On this deadline, Sheehan’s swims had more FINA points than Romano’s. The most recent competition- CCCAN where Romano posted these times, it was always already past, the universality deadline. See Universality Rules…there were some changes with Covid 19.

Swimstats
Reply to  Klorn8d
4 months ago

Sheehan had more FINA points in her highest ranked event, the 100 fly where she’s gone 1:00.01 (790 points). Romano has 781 points in the 200 IM. The Times had to have been done at a FINA sanctioned meet

Last edited 4 months ago by Swimstats
Wyd
4 months ago

Sheehan has been off the map since her age group days at Phoenix swim club. Has she been training in Puerto Rico this whole time? How long do you have to live in a country to represent them

Last edited 4 months ago by Wyd
Walter
Reply to  Wyd
4 months ago

You know Puerto Rico isn’t a country, right?

Parker528
Reply to  Walter
4 months ago

This has always been confusing and a bit tricky for me trying to understand how/why we have – its either 14 or 15 US controlled “Territories” around the globe. All citizens of which are acknowledged as and afforded full right as American citizens… EXCEPT ONE: for some reason I still haven’t figured out why, people in American Samoa, although a territory, are in fact NOT Americans. So, just as with P.R. in this article, so too can athletes from our US Virgin Islands, Guam, etc, so long as they make a qualifying cut or in rare cases when a sport or event is very low in total number of qualified entrants, a territory, even a developing nation- will be allowed… Read more »

Swimlikefishdrinklikefish
4 months ago

If Puerto Rico becomes a state do they loose sporting independence?

GATOR CHOMP 🐊
Reply to  Swimlikefishdrinklikefish
4 months ago

Yes

Fourprs
Reply to  Swimlikefishdrinklikefish
4 months ago

If Puerto Rico becomes a state of the USA, it will no longer be permitted to have their own Olympic Team, Miss Universe candidate, etc.

Water Bug
4 months ago

From experience, PR has usually been very strict in the past with swimmers needing to reside in PR in order to represent them internationally. Not sure if that has changed, but in general you need 12 months residency to represent another country per FINA.

VA says Jeeeeah
Reply to  Water Bug
4 months ago

Quick, someone let Siphiwe Baleka know. There might be time…. (kidding of course). But more options for him for the next cycle. Maybe that DNA test he took for Guinea-Bissou will show a link to the PR as well.