The Michael Andrew train is on a roll, and good luck slowing it down. After breaking the 11-12 50 yard free National Age Group Record two weeks ago in Columbia, Missouri, he set three more this past weekend in Fishers, Indiana. This brings his total up to 9 National Age Group marks.
First to go down was the 50 free, where he swam a 21.85. That bested his 22.08 (before that, the record was a 22.17 from Andrew Jovanovic in 2007). This breaks a significant barrier, as he becomes the first 11-12 year old to ever go sub-22 seconds in the 50 free. For those eyeballing his next challenge, the 13-14 record is a 20.79.
First to go down was the 50 breaststroke record when he swam a 28.24 on Saturday. That betters the old mark set by Chris Miller all the way back in 1994 (remember that 12 & under records are much less tainted than those in older age groups, as the rubber suits were quickly banished by USA Swimming for the younger age groups).
As proof that this time wasn’t a fluke, he actually went the same 28.24 the evening before in a time trial.
And finally, he wrapped the meet up with a 24.04 in the 50 fly, which clears a record set by Andrew Snabes in 2003. Snabes was a monster of a 12-year old (he was rumored to have grown a full-blown beard by the time he was 13), though his development slowed down when he got to high school.
Ryan Thiel (co-author of our Swim Your Swim sub-blog) was at the meet, and sent me a text profesizing that there was no way that Andrew was done breaking records. Not only is he a big kid, but he was described as having phenomenal technique. That credit would go to his father, Peter Andrew, who coaches him in Lawrence, Kansas after a recent move from South Dakota.
There’s always concern that these younger records are broken by huge kids who fizzle out as others catch up in size, but to break a 50 free record by (so far) four-tenths of a second means that there’s is an incredibly strong stroke foundation behind these times.
The next-fastest 11-12 year old boy this season in the 50 free is Lliam Dolan of the Central Florida Marlins in 22.71.
We have videos of Andrews swims, and they will be uploaded sometime this evening. Check back soon.