#ATTNats: Day 3 Prelims Blog


The USA Swimming PR staff is on-site at the 2012 AT&T Winter National Championships to give you all a feel for what goes on at a major meet.

7:31 a.m. CT – I was a tad bit late today (on purpose!) meeting Mandy and newcomer Geri Woessner to the carpooling party. Geri recently joined us as the Business Development Manager. She’s got some cool ideas for USA Swimming so buckle up and enjoy the things ahead.

8:02 – Arrived at the parking garage, stopped our car, waved to National Team Intern Caroline Wells who was walking from the garage to the pool then proceeded to park our car.

8:13 – Mandy held the door open for me as we entered the Aquatic Center. She’s a very kind human being.

8:44 – Looked for Bruce Gemmell, the new coach of the Nation’s Capital Swim Club. Jeff Commings from Swimming World Magazine wanted to sit down and have an extensive interview with Bruce.

8:46 – Found Bruce talking to Katie Ledecky. He said he’d be more than happy to talk with Jeff and said he’d be available after the first two heats of the afternoon 1650y freestyle event which would approximately be around 3:30 p.m.

9:00 – The women’s 200y back kicked of the final prelim session.

9:21 – Missy Franklin closed out the 200y back heats with the fastest swim of the morning. Her time of 1:52.29 puts her in Lane 4 for tonight’s finals and could be her third title of the three-day meet.

9:36 – A crowd favorite, Ryan Lochte, touched the wall in 1:40.69 in the sixth heat of the men’s 100y back.

9:41 – Upon conclusion of the 200y back, Matt Thompson and Austin Surhoff were tied (1:43.81) for the eighth spot which will require a swim-off at the end of the session.

10:33 – Our webcast crew, TakeItLive, does a great job broadcast the meet for you all to see at home. Not only do that, but one of their workers, Melissa Lundie, tries to snag some photographs during warm-ups or when she has a free chance. She was so kind enough to give me a handful to post online at our SwimCam Gallery page.

10:51 – Kevin Cordes from Arizona flirted with the American record in the 200y breast. He swam a 1:51.93, which was just shy of the AR swam by Mike Alexandrov (1:51.73) in 2010.

11:09 – The final event of the morning session is about to begin with the men’s 200y fly. I’m sitting up in the media section writing this up, posting pictures, solving the world’s problems via email and in the process I’m admiring the great job people of the Texas Swimming Center staff has done.

This is my third visit to Austin this year for a meet and each I walk away thinking, “Wow, they do a really great job.” If you know Ann Nellis, Bridgette Rhoades, Jaime Lukeman, Charles Logan, Leo Flores or anyone else on staff here, give them a hearty handshake and thank them.

11:13 – Thinking about the Texas staff who run a pretty tight ship, I don’t want to leave out our National Events staff of Dean Ekeren and Sandra (Lopez) Griffith who make the timeline is adhered to as closely as possible, officials are ready to go, medals are here to be presented – they basically are the masterminds behind what makes this run so smoothly and the Texas staff are the ones that executes everything.

Great job to all!

11:25 – The men’s 200y fly concludes.

If you want to see all the results, you can find them here.

And if you want an autograph from a couple of Olympians, Christine Magnuson and Jessica Hardy will be signing them and taking pictures beginning at 4 p.m. CT leading up until the start of finals.

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