Swimmming News / Swimming video courtesy of Shanda Crowe
MENS 100 Butterfly – FINALS – as reported by SwimSwam
“Stagnant” doesn’t feel like the right word for Michael Phelps’ performances so far in the 100 fly since returning to competition in April at the Mesa Grand Prix. The connotation of the word doesn’t feel right for a swimmer ranked top 10 in the world this year. But his times up until Friday had been flat. In his three Grand Prix meets, he’s been 52.13, 52.13, and 52.11. Today in Athens, he broke through with a 51.67: a statement swim by all accounts. That puts Phelps 2nd in the world so far this year, and makes him faster than any American swimmer he’s going to have to face at Nationals next month.
Ryan Lochte, who beat Phelps the last time they raced head-to-head in this event in Mesa, was 2nd in 53.08 – not looking nearly the same as he did in Mesa. As encouraging as Phelps’ performance is, Lochte’s is equally unnerving for American fans. With Nationals only three weeks away, a 53.0 is going to be a tough time to build on.
Queens University swimmer and NCAA Division II National Champion, Matthew Josa, fininshed 3rd in 53.64. Geoff Cheah, in one of his better swims since joining Club Wolverine a few months ago, was 4th in 53.67. Cheah’s time was just off Tim Phillips B-final winning time of 53.64. Caeleb Dressel took 2nd in the “B” final in 54.41. That’s an in-season best for him.