This is Pancake Hot Take, where we rate racing on a scale of 1-5 pancakes, and give you our highlights. This weekend we saw the top Pros in the country gather in Des Moines as well as the Pac-12 Championships. Since this is a weekend recap, however many pancakes we give, there will be that many Top Swims and Surprises.
Holy wow. This weekend really blew my socks off for a beginning of March, in-season weekend. We saw so many top times in the world, so many historic, top-10 all-time swims. I’ve got to give it to this weekend.
Let’s get into it.
Top 5 Swimmers:
- Regan Smith, takes the 100 back (58.18, would’ve won World Champs by .42) and 200 back (2:06.19, would have gotten silver at worlds… behind herself) PLUS 17-18 NAGs in both the 100 fly and 200 fly
- Katie Ledecky, goes off on Wednesday with 15:29 mile, #5 all-time (for herself and for anyone ever), follows it up with 3:59 400 free, 1:54 200 free
- Reece Whitley, drops 50.8/1:49 100/200 breast (yards) to win double Pac-12 title and crack the top-10 performers list in both events
- Michael Andrew, had a trio of lifetime bests including 59.1 100 Breast, 51.3 100 fly, and a stunning 1:56.8 200 IM to become #6 American all-time
- Kathleen Baker, who got 2nd behind Regan in both backstrokes, but still went insanely fast, dropping 58.5/2:06.3 in the 100/200, which again would have been good for gold/silver this summer at world champs. Plus that nutso 100 breast… but we’ll get to that
Top 5 Surprises:
- Melanie Margalis, shocks with a 4:32 400 IM, becomes #4 American all-time, Good. Gracious.
- Kathleen Baker, 1:07.9 100 breast to win the B-heat, making her a “real” breaststroker
- Allison Schmitt drops a lifetime best in the 100 free, 53.80, which was overshadowed buy the fact that only netted her a 3rd place finish
- Cal men 400 IM, in prelims freshman Jason Louser goes a massive personal best 3:40.4 to make NCAA’s, then in finals we see the reemergence Hugo Gonzalez in this event as he goes on to win the Pac-12 title in 3:36.6
- Zach Poti breaks Ryan Murphy’s meet record in the 100 back, dropping a 44.1
Syrup on Top:
Men’s 100 free is looking DEEP for team USA. I’ve never been to a meet where the B heat is more anticipated (and gets more cheers) than the A final, but when Caeleb Dressel AND Nathan Adrian are in heat 1… that’s just how it goes. Between the 2 heats, there were 6 men under 49 seconds, with a 7th at 49.00 on the dot. Speculations are already being made o f not just Olympic gold in Tokyo, but a new world record, breaking the American standard highlighted by Jason Lezak‘s legendary anchor leg.
HOW MANY PANCAKES DO YOU THINK TODAY DESERVED? LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW
Stay tuned for Pancake Hot Takes every day after finals. And until then… stay hungry.