For those that bemuse that American sprinting is dead have a lot to smile about today.
Despite having a line up of swimmers that include 100m freestyle Olympic champion Nathan Adrian, the ageless Anthony Ervin, and a host of other top-tier swimmers who have the misfortune of racing for an Olympic birth in the deepest country on the planet, there are always voices in the cheap seats that bemoan a loss of freestyle sprinting power in the United States.
And while, yes, the world has caught up in many ways, there are is ample reason to believe that the USA is, and will continue to be, the dominant player in men’s sprint freestyle.
At the SEC championships at the University of Missouri Caeleb Dressel twice lowered the US Open record in the 50 yard freestyle. In the prelims he swam an 18.39, and then lowered that again in finals before a packed house, throwing down absolutely stunning 18.23.
The sophomore from the University of Florida Gators now owns the two fastest times in history at that distance.
Which, when you think about is even more impressive given that the record was formerly set by Cesar Cielo of Brazil (competing for Auburn at the time), while he was wearing a super-suit.
Cielo’s time? What now seems like a paltry 18.47.
In one day Dressel dropped over a quarter of a second on the record.
- His stroke rate is through the roof.
- As the case with Ryan Hoffer, another up and coming freestyle talent, his underwater dolphin kicks are absolutely deadly.
- He is crouched low in the start, which refutes the common notion that you should have your hips up high in your stance during the start.
- In the finals swim it appears that he takes a breath off of his second stroke off the dive. Not sure if this was intentional or not, but it would be another shade of time he could shave off when he competes again at NCAA’s.
- Just wow. That’s about all that can be said. Sit back and enjoy the race videos.
The Prelim Swim – 18.39
The first video is of his prelims swim, courtesy of the Florida Gators swimming Twitter account:
— Gator Swimming (@GatorsSwimDv) February 17, 2016