Ryan Hoffer on 18.88 50 freestyle: It’s finally done (Video)

Reported by Jared Anderson.

Captured by Garrett McCaffrey. 


18-year-old Ryan Hoffer went 18.88 in prelims of the 50 yard freestyle in prelims of USA Swimming’s West Winter Junior Championships, becoming just the second 18-and-under ever to break 19 seconds.

That 18.88 betters Hoffer’s previous best, a 19.06 that he put up almost exactly a year ago. Hoffer was 19.06 to win the Winter West Junior Championship last year. That time was also second all-time for the 17-18 age group. He’s now just two tenths off the National Age Group record of 18.67 held by Olympian Caeleb Dressel.

Hoffer will have a chance to go even faster tonight, holding the top qualifying spot into finals. Behind Hoffer, no other swimmer even broke 20 seconds this morning, much less 19.

It’s a bit of following in Dressel’s footsteps for Hoffer. Dressel, who competed for the Bolles School Sharks in Florida during his high school days, became the first high school age swimmer to break 19 at this very meet in 2013. Dressel was 18.98 at the time. He now competes for Florida, where he’s won three individual NCAA titles in his two years of NCAA swimming so far.

Hoffer is from the opposite end of the country, training out of Arizona and competing for the Scottsdale Aquatic Club. He’s verbally committed to compete for the California Golden Bears next season in the NCAA. Hoffer’s birthday is in July, so he still has six more months to go after Dressel’s NAG record.

Hoffer officially becomes the 27th member of the elusive “18 second club.” Here’s the list of men (based on USA Swimming’s database) who have broken 19 seconds in a 50 yard freestyle, along with their career-bests:

  • Caeleb Dressel, 18.20
  • Cesar Cielo, 18.47
  • Matt Targett, 18.52
  • Vladimir Morozov, 18.63
  • Kristian Gkolomeev, 18.64
  • Nathan Adrian, 18.66
  • Adam Brown, 18.72
  • Fred Bousquet, 18.72
  • Simonas Bilis, 18.76
  • Brad Tandy, 18.80
  • Alex Righi, 18.82
  • Jimmy Feigen, 18.84
  • Marcelo Chierighini, 18.85
  • Paul Powers, 18.85
  • Brad DeBorde, 18.86
  • Ben Wildman-Tobriner, 18.87
  • Alex Coville, 18.87
  • Matt Grevers, 18.88
  • Ryan Hoffer, 18.88
  • Jakob Andkjaer, 18.89
  • Ryan Held, 18.92
  • Josh Schneider, 18.93
  • Derek Toomey, 18.95
  • Austin Staab, 18.96
  • Seth Stubblefield, 18.97
  • George Bovell, 18.98
  • Gideon Louw, 18.99

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
5 years ago

Didn’t he get 18.71? so now he’s in the top 7 of all time. Hopefully he can get past adrian soon.

5 years ago

Damn I cant wait to see this guy with Cal. Maybe Durden can even improve his LCM times likes hes proven to do with his swimmers.

5 years ago

I remember his awful 200 last year. Really showed that he was meant for the smaller pool.

1:35 still isn’t great (considering his 100), but it’s a much needed improvement over a 1:37, showing his desire and ability to improve in long course in the future. But at the end of the day short course is more fun to watch as a(n American) spectator.

5 years ago

The best part about that interview is the comment about the rule that they surrender their phones to the coaches so that they are forced to socialize. Phoenix is now my favorite club.

Reply to  Skeptic
5 years ago

You mean Scottsdale? There is a Phoenix Swim Club, but Ryan doesn’t represent them.

Reply to  dunc1952
5 years ago

Oops, my bad. Scottsdale Swim Club is my new favorite.

Reply to  dunc1952
5 years ago

Make that Scottsdale Aquatic Club…yeah, that’s it. They are my new favorite.

Tom from Chicago
5 years ago

This guy is seriously talented in SCY. I think his :41 100 free last year changed many people’s perception that underwater swimming can be faster than on top for some select few. Not sure if this talent will transfer to LCM, it will be interesting to watch.

5 years ago

It would be good to mark the swims on that list that were done in urethane body suits.

Reply to  Fluidg
5 years ago

It would also be interesting to scientifically calculate a conversion of the fastest swim in nylon briefs.

NM Coach
Reply to  Dawgpaddle
5 years ago

19.0 for BOTH Biondi and Jager!

Nations Best
Reply to  Fluidg
5 years ago

Completely off the top of my head but Suited 18’s include
Freddy biscuits
Names not listed done in jammer

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

Read More »