NC State Smashes U.S. Open 800 Free Relay Record With 6:06.53


If there was any doubt that NC State has evolved beyond just a talented sprint school, tonight eviscerated it. That’s because the Wolfpack themselves eviscerated the fastest time ever done in the 800 free relay to take an early team lead at NCAAs.

NC State’s team of Ryan Held, Andreas Vazaios, Justin Ress and Soeren Dahl combined to go 6:06.53, crushing the previous U.S. Open and NCAA record by a second and a half. That old record was set last year by the Texas Longhorns, who finished second in this race, but did break their own American record.

Held, the team’s sprint superstar, had a massive 1:31.37 leadoff leg. That would have ranked #4 all-time prior to tonight, though two other swimmers pushed into the top 3 (read more about that here) and bumped Held’s time back to #6.

Vazaios was 1:32.23, Ress 1:32.26 and Dahl 1:30.67 on the anchor leg fighting to hold off a charging field of elite swimmers including American record-holder Townley Haas of Texas and Olympic star Ryan Murphy of Cal. Dahl’s time stands up as the third-fastest relay split in history and makes him the second-fastest relay performer all-time. Haas owns the top two splits at 1:30.42 (from this year) and 1:30.52 (from last year).

Dahl represents Denmark internationally and Vazaios Greece, which means their record isn’t eligible for American record status. But it does break both the NCAA and U.S. Open records, tracking the top collegiate swim and the fastest swim done on American soil.

Here’s a look at NC State’s splits compared to Texas’s from last year’s record-setting relay:

NC State 2017 Texas 2016
Ryan Held 1:31.37 1:31.89 Jack Conger
Andreas Vazaios 1:32.23 1:30.52 Townley Haas
Justin Ress 1:32.26 1:33.28 Clark Smith
Soeren Dahl 1:30.67 1:32.34 Joseph Schooling
6:06.53 6:08.03

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5 years ago

Soeren Dahl nearly ties Haas when you factor relay take off deltas – if accurate
NC State was .44, .22, .37 to Texas’s .21, .27, .16
Great swim for both teams. Cant wait for the 200

5 years ago

Wow… I hope NCS rides this momentum to take it all this year.
That would be so great for North Carolina and the ACC.

5 years ago

Is there archived video anywhere?

5 years ago

Race video?

5 years ago

Wow, NC State… 1:31.3 lead off, couple of 1:32.2s, and a 1:30.6 anchor. Obviously there’s the argument that Texas didn’t have Schooling in there and if he had swam the second leg and gone 1:31-1:32 then things could have turned out very differently. But then you could also say NC State would’ve have been pushed to swim faster and they’d still win.
Either way, NC State pulls off the win in reality.

5 years ago

The Danes are certainly proving to be more than just b-final points this year.

dude 2.0
5 years ago

His legs on that last 100… holy moly. It’s like he never gets tired.

5 years ago

Live results are from the women last week… please update!!!!

Reply to  JDawg
5 years ago

JDawg- it’s the same link. It’s working, so you may need to clear your cache and try again.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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