The momentum continued for the University of Florida swimming & diving program, as former Stanford Cardinal Alberto Mestre has announced that he will transfer to the Gators. He plans to arrive in time for the spring semester at Florida, and will work on a Masters Degree in International Business.
He will complete his undergraduate degree at Stanford this semester before beginning at Florida.
Mestre is a sprint freestyler who represented Venezuela at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics over the summer. There, he placed 15th in the 50 free (22.22) and 33rd in the 100 free (49.44). He was the only Venezuelan swimmer to advance from prelims at the Tokyo Olympics.
He is the Venezuelan Record holder in the 50 free at 21.93.
At Florida, he’ll join his younger brother Alfonso Mestre, who is a rising junior with the Gators. Alfonso also swam at the Olympics, but is more distance-oriented: he broke National Records in the 400 (3:47.14) and 800 (7:52.07) freestyles at the Tokyo Games.
Alberto has two seasons of eligibility remaining after swimming at Stanford from 2017 through the fall semester of the 2019-2020 season. He took the 2018-2019 season off to train with the Gator Swim Club, the club team based out of the University of Florida, so he’s very familiar with the program.
He didn’t compete in the 2020-2021 season, so doesn’t get the extra year of eligibility afforded to those who did.
Alberto Mestre‘s best times in yards all come from his freshman season at Stanford.
TOP TIMES (SCY)
- 50 free – 19.51
- 100 free – 43.51
- 200 free – 1:37.63
Besides a pair of returning Olympic medalists and NCAA Champions, Kieran Smith and Bobby Finke, the program recently added 7-time Olympic gold medalist Katie Ledecky to its coaching staff and training group.
The 2021-2022 season is head coach Anthony Nesty’s first year leading a combined men’s and women’s team at Florida. He spent the previous three seasons as the head coach of just the men’s team.
Last season, the Florida men won their 9th-straight SEC Championship in swimming & diving. The team also placed 3rd at the NCAA Championships.
Florida swimmers hold the NCAA Record in the 50 free (Caeleb Dressel), 100 free (Dressel), 500 free (Smith), and 1650 free (Finke).
Mestre’s father, also named Alberto, was a member of three NCAA Championship-winning relays, and two NCAA Championship-winning teams, at the University of Florida from 1983 through 1986. He earned 17 All-America awards in his four seasons and is enshrined in the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame. He competed in the 1980 and 1984 Olympic Games and has 5 career Pan American Games medals.