Olympic Gold Medalists Headline the Arena Grand Prix at Mesa


Ryan Lochte swims the prelims of the 400 IM at the 2012 Olympic Games. (Small)COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Olympic gold medalists Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.), Dana Vollmer (Granbury, Texas), Missy Franklin (Centennial, Colo.) and Nathan Adrian (Bremerton, Wash.) will compete at the Arena Grand Prix at Mesa, which runs from April 11-13 in Mesa, Ariz. The event is the fourth stop of the six-meet 2012-13 Arena Grand Prix Series and will be held at the Skyline Aquatic Center. 

The field features more than 15 additional U.S. Olympians, including Katie Ledecky (Bethesda, Md.), Anthony Ervin (Valencia, Calif.), Natalie Coughlin (Vallejo, Calif.),Dana Vollmer (small) Jessica Hardy (Long Beach, Calif.), Kate Ziegler (Great Falls, Va.) and Conor Dwyer (Winnetka, Ill.). Multiple Olympians with ties to Arizona will also complete in Mesa, such as Matt Grevers (Lake Forrest, Ill.), Clark Burckle (Tucson, Ariz.), Caitlin Leverenz (Tucson, Ariz.), Breeja Larson (Mesa, Ariz.), Christine Magnuson (Tinley Park, Ill.) and Margo Geer (Milford Center, Ohio).

Several members of the U.S. National Team, including Tom Shields (Huntington Beach, Calif.), Elizabeth Pelton (Towson, Md.) and Breeja Larson, are coming off a strong collegiate season having just competed at the 2013 NCAA Championships in Missy Franklin (small)March. 

Preliminary heats in Mesa will start at 9 a.m. local time Thursday through Saturday and finals will begin at 6 p.m. local time. Children 8 years of age and under are free, while adult tickets are $5 for prelims and $10 for finals. For more information, click here.

Viewers at home can catch the action of the Arena Grand Prix via the USA Swimming live webcast or on the Universal Sports Network, which will broadcast the event on April 11 and 12 from 8-9:30 p.m. ET/6-7:30 p.m. PT. Check local listings for channels and Nathan Adrian (small)times in your area.

The competition in Mesa will also see the launch of the “Arena Grand PrixView Featuring Aaron Peirsol,” which offers local youth swimmers, ages 8-12, the chance to compete in a relay event with Olympic gold medalists Aaron Peirsol and Janet Evans. Additionally, the “Autograph Arena” will be open to the public for the second consecutive Grand Prix. Hours of operation are Friday after finals and Saturday after both prelims and finals.

The Arena Grand Prix Series will conclude June 2, 2013 in Santa Clara, Calif. As part of USA Swimming’s eight-year partnership with Arena, the Arena Grand Prix Series will offer swimmers the opportunity to take home prize money for top finishes in all individual Olympic-distance events for each meet in the Series. In each event, first-place finishers will receive $500, second-place finishers will earn $300 and swimmers in third place will take home $100. Prize money will be distributed for each meet in the Series.

The Arena Grand Prix Series serves as an opportunity for swimmers to race against some of the best competition in the country as they continue their preparation for the 2013 Phillips 66 National Championships in Indianapolis, Ind., World University Games in Kazan, Russia and the FINA World Championships in Barcelona, Spain.