USA Swimming revealed the 5 Team USA captains for the upcoming 2022 World Swimming Championships in Hungary, Budapest. Ryan Murphy, Lilly King, Leah Smith, Natalie Hinds, and Caeleb Dressel will lead their fellow Americans into the meet as captains. Captains are voted on by members of the team.
This is the second year in a row that Murphy and Dressel are captains for Team USA, having both served in the position in 2021 at Tokyo 2020. On the women’s side, King, Smith, and Hinds will take over from Allison Schmitt and Simone Manuel who were the female captains in Tokyo.
This isn’t the first time that Leah Smith has captained a US national team, however, as she held the position of captain at the last edition of the World Championships in Gwangju in 2019. There, she, Nathan Adrian, Allison Schmitt, and Matt Grevers were captains.
The 5 Team USA captains for the 2022 World Championships have a total of 38 long course World Championships medals between them. Leah Smith and Ryan Murphy made their World Championships debuts at Kazan 2015, while Caeleb Dressel and Lilly King raced at this meet for the first time at Budapest 2017.
This is the first World Championships outing for Natalie Hinds who also made her Olympic debut in 2021 when she raced for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics. Dressel, King, and Murphy raced at both Tokyo 2020 and Rio 2016, while Smith raced at Rio 2016.
Notably, there are a few swimmers on the team this year who made their World Championships debut before any of the captains including Nic Fink, Chase Kalisz, and Katie Ledecky who raced at Barcelona 2013.
“It’s an incredible honor,” said Murphy. “I think whenever I’m in a position like this, I think back to my first [international] teams and how much I looked up to guys like Nathan Adrian, Anthony Ervin, Michael Phelps — there are so many incredible people who have been in this role. It is truly an honor to follow in their footsteps.”
Smith said “I’m super honored to have been named a captain.” “I’m really proud of my other fellow captains. I think we’re going to bring a lot of experience and fond memories with us to Budapest. I can’t wait to see what we can accomplish together and with the team.”