Kieran Smith v. Jordan Wilimovsky Race Highlights West Coast OW Championships

West Coast Open Water Championships 

  • Oct 17-18, 2020
  • Lake Las Vegas, Henderson NV
  • Hosted by Sandpipers of Nevada 

The country’s biggest open water event of the year is set to kick off on Saturday in Nevada. Some of the top names across the country will be competing at the West Coast OW Championships, hosted by the Sandpipers of Nevada.

The men’s elite 10k is headlined by Olympian Jordan Wilimovsky and American Record holder Kieran Smith

Wilimovsky, who represented the US at the 2016 Olympic Games in the 10k open water event and the 1500m freestyle, is already qualified to go to his second Olympics in 2021 via a 5th place finish in the 10k at the World Championships last year. 

Smith just began his junior year at the University of Florida. At the SEC Championships last February, Smith shattered the American record in the 500 yard freestyle, putting up a time of 4:06.32. Although he typically does not focus on open water, Smith will still be a touch competitor given his recent successes in the pool. 

Both men will also be challenged by Smith’s Florida teammate Brennan Gravley, who represented the United States at the 2019 World Championships in both the 5k and 25k. 

The women’s elite 10k is highlighted by three of the biggest names in American open water swimming currently: Haley Anderson, Ashley Twitchell, and Erica Sullivan

Anderson is a two-time Olympian, having competed at the Olympic Games in both 2012 and 2016. In London, she won a silver medal in the 10k open water event, which she repeated at last summer’s World Championships. As a result of that finish, Anderson is already qualified for the 2021 Olympics in the 10k event. 

Like Anderson, Twitchell is also already qualified to compete in Tokyo after finishing 6th in the 10k event at the World Championships. Over the years, Twitchell has accumulated 5 World Championships medals, including an individual gold in the 5k in 2017.

Sullivan has also enjoyed her successes both in and out of the pool. The Texas commit finished 3rd in the 1500m freestyle at the 2018 National Championships to join Team USA as a member of the Pan Pac team. That year, she also won the national title in the open water 5k event. In the pool, Sullivan is also owns the 2nd fastest mile time in history (15:23.81), only behind Katie Ledecky.

Looking to break up the trio will be 2018 FINA Open Water World Junior Championship 10k gold medalist Chase Travis, who just began her first season at Virginia Tech. 

The elite women’s 5k will feature Sullivan, Travis, and NAG holder Claire Tuggle, while the men’s event will feature Smith and Gravley. 

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3 years ago

Just wanna clear up that I couldn’t compete for NCAA reasons, but it was awesome watching my fellow teammates race!

Mystery Man
3 years ago

Rumor has it Kieran spent months training in Martin Park for this exact moment!

Reply to  Mystery Man
3 years ago

Kieran raced 2 weeks ago at East Coast version. Beat Gravley, but not by much.

Last edited 3 years ago by Coach
3 years ago

I would definitely watch this, if possible

About Nicole Miller

Nicole Miller

Nicole has been with SwimSwam since April 2020, as both a reporter and social media contributor. Prior to joining the SwimSwam platform, Nicole also managed a successful Instagram platform, amassing over 20,000 followers. Currently, Nicole is pursuing her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. After competing for the swim …

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