U.S. Nationals: Regan Smith Going for Third Win on Night Four (Heat Sheet)
The fourth evening of finals at U.S. Nationals will include the 400 freestyle, 100 breaststroke and 100 backstroke. The session begins at 10 a.m. ET in Indianapolis.
The session will open with the women’s 400 free, and Katie Ledecky will be in lane four looking for her second win of the meet after qualifying first in prelims by almost five seconds at 4:01.88. Claire Weinstein, who edged Ledecky in the 200 free, will be in lane five while last year’s Worlds bronze medalist, Leah Smith, holds down lane four. The final also includes Erin Gemmell and Bella Sims, qualified for Fukuoka on the 800 free relay. Notably, Katie Grimes has scratched the B-final after placing 10th in prelims.
Ross Dant and Kieran Smith will be in the middle lanes in the men’s 400 free final, and they are likely the favorites. Teenager Rex Maurer is in lane three while Olympic finalist Jake Mitchell, already qualified for the team in the 800 free relay, is in lane one after he tied for sixth in prelims.
The race between Lydia Jacoby and Lilly King in the women’s 100 breast has a potential spoiler in between after Kaitlyn Dobler qualified first in prelims. On the men’s side, Nic Fink is in lane four with the three men who beat him in the 200 breast, Matt Fallon, Josh Matheny and Jake Foster all in central lanes.
Regan Smith is the big favorite in the women’s 100 backstroke, and she could take aim at her American record of 57.57 or even Kaylee McKeown’s world record of 57.45. Nine swimmers broke 1:00 this morning, with one of them (Amy Fulmer) relegated to the B-final. Katharine Berkoff, the 50 back winner, will be in lane five, while 2022 Worlds bronze medalist Claire Curzan, swimming in lane six, is still looking to get on the Worlds team.
The last A-final of the night is the men’s 100 back, with American-record holder Ryan Murphy in lane four surrounded by Hunter Armstrong, Destin Lasco and Justin Ress.