Nov. 26, 2007
Other Notes on the Short Course Nationals (provided by USA Swimming)
Top swimmers in the country, including multiple U.S. Olympians and world record-holders, will head to Atlanta for the 2007 ConocoPhillips USA Swimming Short Course National Championships, Nov. 29 - Dec. 1, 2007. The competition will be held at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center, which was the site of the 1996 Olympic aquatic events. Among the nine Olympians expected to compete at the meet are Michael Phelps (Baltimore, Md.), Gary Hall Jr. (Miami Beach, Fla.), Natalie Coughlin (Vallejo, Calif.) Katie Hoff (Towson, Md.), Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.), Rachel Komisarz (Louisville, Ky.) and Tara Kirk (Bremerton, Wash.). The meet will also feature 2008 Olympic hopefuls, including Cullen Jones (New Brunswick, N.J.), Ben Wildman-Tobriner (San Francisco, Calif.), and Jessica Hardy (Long Beach, Calif.).
In addition to naming the 2007 Short Course National Champions, the meet will also serve as the selection meet for the 2008 FINA Short Course World Championships that will take place April 9-13, 2008, in Manchester, England. The top swimmer in each of the individual Olympic events will be invited to the U.S. Short Course World Championships Team.
The meet will follow the traditional schedule of morning prelims and evening finals with the morning sessions starting each day at 9 a.m. and evening finals beginning at 6 p.m. Four to six events will be contested daily. All-session passes are available for $15-$25, prelim session passes are $4 for adults and $3 for children, and final session passes are $7 for adults and $6 for children. For more information, visit usaswimming.org.
Going the Distance at any Length: Olympic gold medalist Natalie Coughlin can succeed at any distance. Not only is she one of the fastest women in the world in long course meters, she also holds more individual short course yard American records than any other American woman. Coughlin, who owns a total of six individual American records. set five of the records more than four years ago. Will she break any records in Atlanta? Only time will tell.
Head-to-head Competition: Long course world-record holders Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte compete in many of the same events. At this year's 2007 FINA World Championships, the duo claimed the top two spots in the 400m and 200m IM, with Phelps coming out the victor in each event. Yet, while Phelps owns the 400y IM American record, Lochte is the American record-holder in the 200y IM. The 400y and 200y IMs will surely be among the most competitive races of the meet.
Making a Splash in Atlanta: The USA Swimming Foundation will bring its national child-focused water safety initiative to Atlanta for "Make a Splash Day" on Friday, November 30. Children from the Atlanta Boys & Girls Club will attend Friday evening finals to see the stars of swimming, including 2007 World Championship Team member and national Make a Splash spokesman Cullen Jones.
The Most Exciting Race Under 20 Seconds: The 50y free is the shortest race in competitive swimming. A good start, perfect turn, and strong finish are essential to win this event. With a field expected to include Olympic gold medalist Gary Hall Jr., American record-holder (SCY) Ben Wildman-Tobriner, and rising star Cullen Jones, it should be a very close race in Atlanta.
Pool of Champions: Located in downtown Atlanta, on the campus of Georgia Tech, the GT Aquatic Center was the site of the 1996 Olympic aquatic events where four world records were broken. The campus also served as the Olympic Village and boxing venue during the Games. Most recently, the 2006 Men's NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships were held at the facility where records were broken every night.