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Sunday, May 1, 2022

Phillips 66 International Team Trials Wraps with 41 Athletes Named to World Championships Roster


Phillips 66 International Team Trials Wraps with 41 Athletes Named to World Championships Roster

The final night of racing wrapped up Saturday as 41 athletes who competed at the Phillips 66 International Team Trials were officially named to the 2022 FINA World Championships U.S. roster. The full roster can be viewed here

The roster features 41 names, 28 of whom will be making their first FINA World Championships (LCM) appearance. Four athletes—Michael Andrew, Claire Curzan, Caeleb Dressel and Katie Ledecky—qualified in four individual events to lead the team, while Ledecky and Chase Kalisz became one of the select few swimmers to ever qualify for five FINA World Championships rosters. 

The final night of competition at the Greensboro Aquatic Center featured Alex Walsh, the 2020 Olympic silver medalist in the women’s 200m IM, earning another shot at swimming the event on the international level as she rocketed to a 2:07.84 tonight for the win. Her time set a new U.S. Open record in the event, erasing Kathleen Baker’s 2:08.32 from Irvine in 2018 from the books. Sixteen-year-old Leah Hayes grabbed second, just dipping under the 2:10 barrier with a 2:09.99, good for a new 15-16-year-old National Age Group record.

“I really just wanted to go for it," Walsh said. "A bunch of the top seeds scratched so I kind of had a feeling that I’d have some open water on the freestyle so I just kind of took that momentum and rode with it. I didn’t expect to go that fast and I really just couldn’t be happier with the swim.

“I’m really proud of her [Hayes] for making the team as a 16-year-old – I used to dream of that when I was a 16-year-old. To see her accomplish that, I’m just happy I was right there along with her doing it.”

On the men’s side, Chase Kalisz and Carson Foster led the way with the only sub-1:57 swims of the day. Kalisz touched first in 1:56.21, with Foster back in 1:56.65. The duo will take on both IM events together in Budapest following tonight's result and Thursday's 400m IM, where Foster out-touched Kalisz.

The women’s 50m free final turned out to be one of the closest races of the entire meet, with less than two tenths separating the top five finishers. Torri Huske got to the wall first in 24.50, her third win of the meet after also taking the 100m free and 100m fly earlier in the week. Erika Brown, who made the team in the 4x100m free relay earlier in the meet, took second in 24.52 just a hundredth in front of Gretchen Walsh.

“I was honestly really excited to race that," Huske said. "I kind of feel like I had a carefree attitude going into it, which is not really like what I’m normally like! I’m usually pretty high stress about it and pretty nervous. I was nervous, but I was really just excited to race.”

Just as they did in Tokyo, Caeleb Dressel and Michael Andrew will represent the U.S. in the men’s 50m free as the pair finished well out in front of the field with times of 21.29 and 21.45, respectively. 

In the distance freestyle events, Katie Ledecky (15:38.99) and Bobby Finke (7:43.32) added to their event lineups with additional wins in the women’s 1500m free and men’s 800m free, respectively. Both swimmers are the defending Olympic champions in those events. They’ll be joined by Katie Grimes (15:51.36) and Charlie Clark (7:50.07).

The 2022 FINA World Championships will take place in Budapest, Hungary from June 18-25. This week's competition also served as the qualifier for the 2022 Junior Pan Pacific Championships roster and as part of the selection for the 2022 Mel Zajac Jr. Invitational. Both of these rosters will be released later. To view all international team selection procedures, results and more, visit https://www.usaswimming.org/event/2022/04/26/default-calendar/Phillips-66-International-Team-Trials.

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