The action is underway at the 2012 Omaha Swimvitational, the first meet in the newly-completed pool for the 2012 Olympic Trials in Omaha’s CenturyLink Center.
There were no mind-blowing times in the morning, but were some very good swims – with many of the top athletes reporting that they plan to suit-up for finals via their Twitter accounts, we could see some speed in the finals.
One of the most important swims of this meet is the 100 free of 2004 Olympian Rhi Jeffrey, who has been sort of a mystery on the fringe as she quietly returned to training in New Zealand in the last year. She took the top seed in the prelims in 55.81, just bettering Arizona’s Margo Geer (55.94). I think that’s a time that Jeffrey has to be thrilled with for a prelim, after how long she was out of the water for.
Another Wildcat, Alyssa Anderson was 3rd in 56.67 – a great time for the middle-distance swimmer. That, in fact, is a lifetime best for her by nearly a second.
Among notable performances from the junior ranks, 15-year old Eryn Eddy from the Loveland Swim Club was 10th in the prelim in 58.06 – a second-and-a-half drop.
The South African sprinters topped the men’s 100 free, with Roland Schoeman taking the top spot in 50.12 followed by Darian Townsend in 50.25. Arizona’s Giles Smith was 3rd in 50.99.
Smith also took top honors at the end of the session in the 100 fly prelims with a 54.27 (expect something more around a 53.0 in finals), with training partner Masayuki Kishida of Japan there to push him (54.49).
Tucson Ford’s Amanda Beard sits as the 4th seed after prelims of the women’s 200 breast in 2:35.96, behind top-seeded Gisselle Kohoyda from Louisville (2:31.47 – she could be a breakout star of trials in this race) and Wisconsin’s Ashley Wanland (2:31.55).
In the men’s 200 breaststroke, a race that we could see play out again in three weeks was set up, as the young Kevin Cordes took the top seed in 2:16.72, followed by veteran teammate 2:16.90. That could be a head-to-head matchup that will determine an Olympic spot at Trials as well.