Ultra Swim Swimmer of the Month is a recurring SwimSwam feature shedding light on a U.S.-based swimmer who has proven themselves over the past month. As with any item of recognition, Swimmer of the Month is a subjective exercise meant to highlight one athlete whose work holds noteworthy context – perhaps a swimmer who was visibly outperforming other swimmers over the month, or one whose accomplishments slipped through the cracks among other high-profile swims. If your favorite athlete wasn’t selected, feel free to respectfully recognize them in our comment section.
16-year-old Claire Curzan was already the best butterflyer and freestyler in 15-16 age group history. But in December, she also became one of the best backstrokers the age group has ever seen.
The TAC Titan hit career-bests in the 100-yard back (50.18) and 200-yard back (1:49.35) at the TAC Blizzard Blitz in early December. Both were sizable time drops: Curzan cut eight tenths of a second in the 100 back for her first swim ever under 51, and her 200 back was a a drop of 1.7 seconds.
Curzan is already the National Age Group (NAG) record-holder in the 50 free (21.51), 100 free (47.23) and 100 fly (49.73). In December, she added the 100 back, beating world record-holder Regan Smith, who was just 50.58 as a 16-year-old. Meanwhile Curzan moved to #2 all-time behind Smith’s 1:48.30 in the all-time 15-16 200 back ranks.
Curzan carried a busy event schedule at TAC’s December meet. She also went 22.1 and 21.7 in a pair of 50 frees, 47.5 and 48.6 in a pair of 100 frees, and 49.8 and 51.0 in a pair of 100 fly races.
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