2021 U.S. Open Swimming Championships
- Wednesday, December 1st – Saturday, December 4th, 2021
- Greensboro Aquatic Center, Greensboro, NC
- LCM (50m)
- Meet Info
- Meet Central
- Psych Sheets
- Live Stream
- Live Results (Omega)
- Saturday Finals Heat Sheet
- Day 4 Prelims Recap
Stanford freshman Regan Smith broke the U.S. Open Championship Record in the 200 meter backstroke on Saturday in her penultimate swim of the meet.
She swam 2:07,09, which cracks over a second off the old Meet Record of 2:08.42 that was set by Hayley McGregory in 2008. That record was the second-oldest championship record, after the 1999 vintage record of 2:07.20 in the 200 fly set by Australian legend Susie O’Neill.
Smith is the World Record holder in this event, but missed the U.S. team in the race for last summer’s Olympic Games. At the Olympic Trials in June, she was the fastest swimmer in prelims with a 2:07.81, the fastest swimmer in semifinals with a 2:07.23, and in spite of dropping another half-second in finals to 2:06.79, she finished 3rd to just-miss the team behind Phoebe Bacon and Rhyan White.
Her 2:07.09 is much faster than she was at last year’s US Open (2:11.74 – though under all of the usual qualifiers of COVID-19). From a very young age, it hasn’t been uncommon for Smith to pop fast swims in non-taper meets: for example, at last season’s Pro Swim Series stop in Indianapolis in May, she swam 2:06.90 in this race.
The record she broke was that of Hayley McGregory, one of the best-ever American swimmers to not make an Olympic Team. Born in London, McGregory was raised in Houston, Texas and become an American citizen in 2000. She split her college career between the University of Texas and USC, and eventually turned pro early.
McGregory finished third at the U.S. Olympic Trials in individual events four times, just barely missing out on the team on each occasion. She finished third in both the 100 and 200 backstrokes at both the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Trials, even after setting a World Record in the 100 back in prelims in 2008.
|New Meet Record||
Old Meet Record
|100m||32.07 (1:02.13)||32.58 (1:02.38)|
|200m||32.69 (1:04.96)||32.93 (1:06.04)|
Smith previously picked up a win in the 100 back (58.69) this weekend. She was also the fastest swimmer in prelims of the 100 fly (59.22) before scratching the final. She still has the 200 fly to swim on Saturday – an event where she was 3rd in prelims, but also an event where she took an Olympic silver medal in Tokyo.