NCAA finalist Mackenzie Padington will be sitting out this coming college season for the University of Minnesota, instead training for a potential Olympic bid for Canada. Padington will be training at the High Performance Center – Victoria, which Swimming Canada announced today will have a new head coach in Brad Dingey.
Minnesota confirmed the news today, saying Padington will be taking an off-year to train for the Olympics. Padington finished 3rd at NCAAs in both the 1650 free and 500 free last year, and was Minnesota’s second-leading scorer with 32 individual points. Padington was also 37th in the 200 free and had a 1:44.9 split on Minnesota’s scoring 800 free relay.
Padington is coming off a great summer in which she won the 400-, 800- and 1500-meter frees at Canadian Trials in April. The 20-year-old qualified for the Canadian World Championships team, and competed in the 400 and 800 in Gwangju, Korea. Padington was 24th in the 400 and 18th in the 800.
Her season-bests rank 2nd (400), 1st (800) and 1st (1500) among Canadians last season.
Padington’s Top Times
- 1500m free: 16:23.66
- 800m free: 8:31.68
- 400m free: 4:08.82
- 200m free: 1:58.39
- 1650y free: 15:47.16
- 500y free: 4:35.21
- 200y free: 1:44.23
Padington is the next in a long list of top athletes taking the college season off to focus on long course meters in the year leading up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. As of now, other reported redshirts, gap years, and/or deferrals include:
- Taylor Ruck, Stanford (Canada)
- Olivia Carter, Georgia (USA)
- Ida Hulkko, Florida State (Finland)
- Faith Knelson, Arizona (Canada)
- Mackenzie Padington, Minnesota (Canada)
- Dean Farris, Harvard (USA)
- Javier Acevedo, Georgia (Canada)
- Giovanni Izzo, NC State (Italy)
- Jarod Arroyo, Arizona State (Puerto Rico)
- Ruslan Gaziev, Ohio State (Canada)
- Mario Koenigsperger, USC (New Zealand)
- Grant House, Arizona State (USA)