Women's 400 LC Meter Free
Katie Hoff vs. Chloe Sutton Part II
The 500yd final at the SoCal Grand Prix in January was one of the races of that meet with Sutton winning in 4:36.76. Hoff has the better turns of the two, although Sutton was quicker between the walls when they last met. Sutton has been dominating the Grand Prix series so far and has already posted a 4:11 400 LC Free this year. It will be interesting to see what kind of shape Hoff is in this weekend as she posts her first LC times of the year. With the final being swum in LC meters we could be in for a great final. Hoff's FAST teammate Caroline Burckle, Sarah Henry and Samantha Tucker should also be in the mix for podium spots.
World leading time in 2010 - Jazmin Carlin - GBR - 4:06.41
Women's 200 LC Meter IM
Ariana Kukors was one of 2009's stand-out swimmers. Her stunning 2:06.15 WR from Rome last year in this event is one of those records that could remain for many years with the new suit laws. Whilst it is still early in the season it will be fascinating to see what time Kukors will post; leading the world this year is one of 2010's best performers, Emily Seebohm. Her challenge in Austin will come in the form of Whitney Myers, Erika Erndl, Justine Mueller, Sarah Henry and Megan Jendrick.
World leading time in 2010 - Emily Seebohm AUS - 2:11.80
Men's 50 LC Meter Free
Olympic Champion, World Champion and World Record holder in this event, Cesar Cielo, goes into this event as clear favourite. However, the rest of the field is stacked with talent. From 2009's LC world rankings we have No.1 (Cesar Cielo), No. 4 (George Bovell), No. 8 (Cullen Jones), equal No. 12's (Nicholas Santos and Garrett Weber-Gale) and equal No. 17's (Nicholas Brunelli and Bryan Lundquist). Also in the mix are the in-form Matt Grevers, Jakob Andkjaer, William Copeland, Masayuki Kishida, Simon Burnett and a 50 Free cameo from Nick Thoman.
Ashley Callus leads the world with a quick 22.22 but with the talent assembled in Austin this mark is under serious threat. I've recently looked at the average world leading times over the last decade and have predicted that the average Top 5 time in the world this year will be around 21.88. Whilst the average Top 25 time might be around 22.18. This meet should give me a good indication how close those predictions might be.
World leading time in 2010 - Ashley Callus AUS - 22.22
Women's 100 LC Meter Breaststroke
The only two women ever to swim under 1:05 in this event, Rebecca Soni and Jessica Hardy, renew their rivalry with what promises to be an epic 100 Breast battle. Australian Leisel Jones has been on fire in 2010 already posting 1:05.85 this year and the pressure is on Soni and Hardy to answer Lethal Leisel's early season speed. Soni swam 1:04.85 SC Meters at a meet in Uster, Switzerland already this year and clearly is in good form. Hardy was second at that meet in a time of 1:05.81, however has looked sharp in all of her competitions this year. Amanda Reason, Megan Jendrick, Keri Hehn, Justine Mueller and Corrie Clark will all likely be battling it out for 3rd spot. Expect Jones' world leading time to come under serious scrutiny this weekend.
World leading time in 2010 - Leisel Jones AUS - 1:05.85
Men's LC Meter 100 Backstroke
Aaron Piersol starts his LC 2010 season this weekend and the 100 Back looks like one of the races of the meet. Olympic Champion, World Champion and World Record holder Piersol comes up against Olympic silver medallist Matt Grevers and USA's rising backstroke star and SC World Record holder Nick Thoman. This event will also give the swimming world a rare chance to see Cesar Cielo racing backstroke.
World leading time in 2010 - Ryosuke Irie JAP - 53.32 (must have missed this swim, 53.32 is seriously quick and not too far from Piersol's own textile best time of 52.98)
All results can be found here and live video with the excellent Mel Stewart calling the finals here. Psych sheet here.