The Tide Swim Team in Virginia swam a 1:45.08 in the 200 meter medley relay on Sunday, everyone knew it was a great swim. Worst-case, it was the second-fastest 15-18 200 medley relay in history.
It was the best-case scenario that everyone was wondering about, though. That’s because of a quirk in the USA Swimming rules, where the existing 17-18 National Age Group Record was faster than the existing 15-18 National Age Group Record. These four swimmers for Tide were all 16, 17 and 18, so it was a bit murky as to whether they actually broke the record.
The logic is kind of confusing, but if the 1989 team from Las Vegas Gold was made up of 17 and 18 year olds and went a 1:44.93, then they should have the record ahead of the 15, 16, 17, and 18 year olds who went 1:46.
But that age on the 17-18 record, the second-oldest relay record on the books, set off some sirens.
We reached out to USA Swimming, and on Monday morning their records group got back to us:
There are some NAG record changes that have occurred. The 17-18 age group record 1:44.93 by Las Vegas Gold in 1989 was set before we started to recognizes records for the 15-18 age group. When we began recognize records of 15-18 that’s when we started, and moved forward.
So basically, Las Vegas Gold didn’t get the 15-18 record off-the-bat when records began recognition in 2005, because it would have been hard to prove that there wasn’t another true 15-18 relay that was faster before that point.
Editor’s aside: the coaching staff of Las Vegas Gold when they swam that time? David Marsh and Bob Bowman. Woof. They coached Mel Stewart and Rowdy Gaines in that time, though neither was on the record-setting relay.
Moral of the story:
The Tide Swim Team group of Nathaniel Dacruz, Austin Temple, Harrison Pierce, and Austin Ryan are the new 15-18 National Age Group Record holders in the 200 meter medley relay.
The truly impressive split is Temple’s 28.37: a split that almost puts him in the category of ‘world class’. The 17-year old high school senior had a breakout meet, splitting a 1:02.17 in the 100 meter breaststroke on the Tide winning 400 medley relay and a 1:03.23 in the 100 meter breaststroke individual final. He and the rest of this relay are coached by Josh Fulton.
The old record was a 1:46.78 belonging to the Mecklenburg Aquatic Club (precursors to SwimMAC) by a relay that included Ricky Berens on the butterfly leg and Matthew Patton on the freestyle leg.