Soni and Vollmer Win Again on the Third Night of the Charlotte Grand Prix

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.) and Dana Vollmer (Granbury, Texas) collected their second gold medals of the meet during the third night of the Charlotte UltraSwim Grand Prix. Michael Phelps (Baltimore, Md.) picked up his second medal of the meet with a silver in the 200m fly. 

Soni’s second gold of the meet came in the 200m breast. Her time of 2:22.22 was the fastest in the world this year. Micah Lawrence (Pflugerville, Texas) took home the silver medal in 2:24.62 and Caitlin Leverenz (Tucson, Ariz.) won the bronze with a time of 2:27.14.

Vollmer earned her second gold medal in the 50m fly with a meet record 25.80. Claire Donahue (Bowling Green, Ky.) and Andrea Georoff from SwimMAC Carolina finished second and third, respectively, in 26.69 and 26.87 for the women.

In the first race of the evening, Kathleen Hersey (Atlanta, Ga.) and Elaine Breeden (Lexington, Ky.) went head-to-head in the women’s 200m fly as Hersey beat out Breeden with a time of 2:08.68. Breeden earned her first medal of the meet – a silver – with a time of 2:12.45 and Kim Vandenberg (Moraga, Calif.) touched third in 1:58.85.

Phelps was up against two other 2008 Olympians, China’s Wu Peng and South Africa’s Sebastien Rousseau, in the 200m fly. Rousseau grabbed the lead after the first 100m with Phelps and Peng close behind. Peng took the lead in the final 25m and finished first just ahead of Phelps in 1:56.69. Phelps, swimming in his final Grand Prix meet, touched in 1:56.87. Rousseau finished third in 1:57.54.

“I feel like these are little quizzes,” said Phelps of the Grand Prix events. “They are like little building blocks.”

Jessica Hardy (Long Beach, Calif.) commanded the women’s 50m free field with a time of 0:24.83. A pair from SwimMAC finished second and third with Madison Kennedy (Avon, Conn.) winning silver with a time of 0:25.01 and Kara Lynn Joyce (Athens, Ga.) capturing bronze at 0:25.09.

In the men’s 50m free, Josh Schneider (Cincinnati, Ohio) touched first with a time of 22.10 just ahead of Matthew Targett who finished in 22.37. South Africa’s Gideon Louw swam into third with a time of 22.37.

Rachel Bootsma (Eden Prairie, Minn.) and Elizabeth Pelton (Baltimore, Md.) finished the women’s 100m backstroke with a thrilling tie. In a continuation of night two of the Charlotte UltraSwim Grand Prix, three individual meet records fell on the third night of action.
The women’s 100m backstroke proved to be one of the more thrilling finishes of the meet so far. Pelton and Bootsma raced to the very end, only to both touch at exactly 1:00.25. Natalie Coughlin (Vallejo, Calif.), who holds the American Record in the event, touched third with a time of 1:00.83. 
On the men’s side of the 100m back, Nick Thoman (Cincinnati, Ohio) took home the gold with a time of 53.77. Ben Hesen of Pacesetter and Eugene Godsoe (Greensboro, N.C.) finished second and third, respectively, in 54.19 and 54.22.

Allison Schmitt (Canton, Mich.) won his second race of the meet with a meet record 4:05.40 in the women’s 400m free. Katie Ledecky from Curl Burke Swim Club touched the wall next in 4:05.79. Chloe Sutton (Mission Viejo, Calif.) finished third for the bronze medal in 4:07.53.

Tunisia’s Ous Mellouli grabbed the victory on the men’s side of the 400m free with a 3:50.17. Charlie Houchin (Raleigh, N.C.) and Connor Jaeger from Club Wolverine battled it out for second and third, respectively. Houchin came into the wall in 3:50.85 and Jaeger was two-hundredths of a second behind in 3:50.87.

Eric Shanteau (Lilburn, Ga.) swept the men’s side of the Olympic breaststroke events with a 2:09.72 in the 200m breast after winning the 100m breast on Friday night. Brendan Hansen (Havertown, Pa.) was second to stop the clock at 2:11.74 and Christian Schurr from Longhorn Aquatics rounded out the podium in 2:15.03.

On the men’s side of the 50m fly, Godsoe followed Targett’s meet record 23.11 with a 23.89 of his own. 2011 FINA World Championship Team member Cullen Jones from SwimMAC Carolina finished third in 24.18.

The Charlotte Grand Prix will conclude on Sunday with prelims starting at 9 a.m. ET and finals beginning at 6:00 p.m. ET. Universal Sports will also broadcast the event from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. ET and USA Swimming will have a live webcast of both prelims and finals.

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