Regan Smith Rips U.S. Open Meet Records in 200 Back (2:04.27) and 200 Fly (2:06.72)

by Riley Overend 8

December 02nd, 2023 National, News, Records, U.S. Open

2023 U.S. OPEN SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS

Regan Smith absolutely annihilated her 200 backstroke/200 butterfly double on Saturday night, crushing her own U.S. Open meet record in the 200 back with a time of 2:04.27 before taking down a 24-year-old meet record in the 200 fly (2:06.72) belonging to Australian legend Susie O’Neill (2:07.20).

Smith, 21, dominated both races by more than two seconds. In the 200 back, her winning time of 2:04.27 shaved more than a second off her own U.S. Open meet record of 2:05.28 from last year.

Smith was .01 seconds under Kaylee McKeown’s world record pace at the midway point of the 200 back (1:00.74). The Stanford University product and current Arizona State pro ultimately finished more than half a second faster than her 2:04.94 from the 2023 World Championships, where she captured the silver medal behind McKeown (2:03.85). Smith’s lifetime best in the 200 back is 2:03.35 from the 2019 World Championships, which was a world record at the time.

In the 200 fly about an hour later, Smith’s winning time of 2:06.72 erased O’Neill’s U.S. Open meet standard of 2:07.20 that had stood untouched since 1999. O’Neill is an eight-time Olympic medalist who broke Mary T. Meagher‘s legendary world record in the 200 fly.

Smith has been as fast as 2:03.86 in the 200 fly at the Sun Devil Open earlier this year before Worlds. She went on to earn bronze at Worlds with a time of 2:06.58.

We thought we had seen the most impressive double of the meet on Friday night when Siobhan Haughey broke the U.S. Open meet record in the 200 free (1:54.20) before upsetting reigning Olympic champion Lydia Jacoby in the 100 breast (personal-best 1:06.05) just about 20 minutes later. However, Smith may have one-upped her with a pair of meet records tonight, though her double was more spaced out.

The wins marked the second and third of the week for Smith after she triumphed in the 100 back (58.16) on Friday night. She also placed 3rd in the 400 IM (4:38.77) on Friday and 5th in the 200 IM on Thursday (2:09.50), both in personal-best times.

WOMEN’S 200 BACKSTROKE – FINALS

Top 8:

  1. Regan Smith — 2:04.27
  2. Claire Curzan — 2:06.39
  3. Summer McIntosh — 2:06.81
  4. Phoebe Bacon — 2:07.49
  5. Kennedy Noble – 2:10.07
  6. Leah Shackley — 2:10.23
  7. Aviv Barzelay — 2:10.72
  8. Anna Peplowski — 2:12.37

Claire Curzan finished 2nd with a time of 2:06.39, just .04 seconds off her best time from Nationals. She’s been on a tear in the backstroke events at this meet, as she set a personal best in the 100 back on Friday night. Finishing in 3rd was Summer McIntosh, who showed off her versatility by getting under 2:07 for the first time in her career (2:06.81).

WOMEN’S 200 BUTTERFLY – FINALS

  • World Record: 2:01.81, Zige Liu (2009)
  • American Record: 2:03.86, Regan Smith (2023)
  • U.S. Open Meet Record: 2:07.20, Susan O’Neill (1999)
  • U.S. Open Record: 2:03.86, Regan Smith (2023)
  • 2024 Olympic Trials Cut: 2:13.69

Top 8:

  1. Regan Smith — 2:06.72
  2. Lindsay Looney — 2:09.31
  3. Dakota Luther — 2:10.17
  4. Leah Gingrich — 2:11.35
  5. Charlotte Hook — 2:11.80
  6. Tess Howley — 2:12.04
  7. Sofia Sartori — 2:12.37
  8. Lillie Nordmann — 2:13.00

In 2nd was Smith’s ASU training partner, Lindsay Looney, with a 2:09.31, while Dakota Luther clocked a 2:10.17 for third.

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PFA
6 months ago

Solid swim for Regan (in the 2 fly 2 back was really FAST) nothing outstanding and a record is a record but I thought she would be about .5 quicker in the 2 fly but I guess after the 2 back it was gonna be a bit harder to finish strong.

Boomer
6 months ago

I thought Smith has been as fast as 2:03 in the 200 fly? In the Sun Devil meet this year before Worlds

Summer Love
Reply to  Boomer
6 months ago

Yes she did.

But that was Sun Devil meet, not US Open.

Sub13
Reply to  Boomer
6 months ago

It’s the US Open MEET Record, which is just this meet. She didn’t break the US Open record, which is any comp on US soil.

CLTS
6 months ago

She has had a fantastic season all around but I don’t see how she gets past Mckeon in the backstrokes or McIntosh in the 200 fly next summer, unless either or both get sick or injured.

Wanna Sprite?
Reply to  CLTS
6 months ago

Doubting the asu effect

SwimCoach
Reply to  CLTS
6 months ago

You’re right, she should just quit. Sporting events always play out how they are expected to.

Last edited 6 months ago by SwimCoach
VA Steve
Reply to  SwimCoach
6 months ago

Thank you. The joy of swimming is the racing and we are surprised at every international meet of consequence. I suspect we will be in 2024 as well.

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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