Michigan Signs Mexican Olympian and Record-Holder, Ricardo Vargas

The University of Michigan men’s swimming and diving team added another name to their class of 2021: Ricardo Vargas (his full name is Ricardo David Vargas Jacobo) of Guernavaca, Mexico. A distance freestyler, Vargas is the Mexican record-holder in the 400m free, 800m free, and 1500m free in long course, and the 800m free in short course. He broke the 400m national record while swimming at Arena Pro Swim Series in Charlotte this past May, which is where he qualified for the 2016 Olympic Games with a FINA “A” cut in the 1500m free (15:14.77); he placed third in the event behind Connor Jaeger and Zane Grothe.

In Rio, Vargas was third in his heat and 25th overall in prelims. He improved his 1500m to 15:11.53, setting a new Mexican national record. At the same time he lowered his own record in the 800m free with a leadoff split of 8:00.47. He had set the previous mark of 8:06.26 at the 2015 Mexican National Championships.

Vargas’ times are right on the brink of scoring at NCAAs already; his converted 1500m would have landed him right around 17th in the 1650, while his 400 would have placed him in the low 30s in the 500.

Michigan’s distance crew grew by two this year with the addition of freshmen Felix Auböck from Austria and Southern California’s Tim Hanson. Sophomores Stephen Holmquist and Blake Maczka, as well as junior PJ Ransford (10th in the 500 and 13th in the 1650 at 2016 NCAAs) will all still be on campus when Vargas arrives, making for a formidable training group.

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About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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