PHOENIX, Arizona, April 17. THE 2013 Far Western Short Course Championships was an incredible meet. Consistently one of the fastest age group events in the nation, this year the California meet saw countless meet records fall in every age group, a new National Age Group record in the boy's 11-12 400 freestyle relay, and a vast collection of top-10 times in the nation.
Swimming World TV was on-deck at the Morgan Hill Aquatic Center, live streaming the finals sessions, filming preliminary races, interviewing participants and producing nightly finals recaps. All event videos, including the on-demand preliminary races, are now fully uploaded and can be found on the event landing page.
Watching the rivalry between Pleasanton's Maxime Rooney and PEAK's Benjamin Ho quickly became one of the highlights of the meet. The pair of NAG record holders traded 13-14 boys event titles throughout the meet. On the last night of finals, the duo clocked an incredible pair of 3:57s in the 400 IM.
400 IM recap: Ho was the top seed going into finals, at a 4:09.40 to Rooney's 4:11.08. Rooney was nearly a second ahead of Ho after the butterfly, but Ho, the 200 backstroke NAG record holder, reclaimed the lead on the backstroke. The two went stroke-for-stoke in the breaststroke, then Rooney pulled out the win with a speedy 25.62 last 50 split, touching the wall at a 3:57.18 to Ho's 3:57.77. Both were under Nick Silverthorn's 2010 meet record (3:58.03). To put their times in perspective, 14-year-old Michael Phelps swam a 3:56.80 400IM, mere tenths faster than Rooney's final time.
Check out Swimming World TV's video interview with Maxime Rooney after the 400 IM.
On the girls side, there were a number of exciting races between Ripon Aquatic's Erika Brown and Quicksilver's Lauren Green. The duo were back in forth in the girl's 13-14 200 freestyle on the first night of finals.
200 freestyle recap: Erika Brown took University of Southern California commit Chelsea Chenault's 2009 13-14 girls 200 freestyle meet record. Brown touched for the win at a 1:49.25, just ahead of the 1:49.32 record. The race was back and forth with Quicksilver's Lauren Green, who turned slightly ahead of Brown at the 150, before Brown chased her down with a fast 27.72 last 50 split. Green finished the event second at a 1:49.37.
Update: Swimming World TV ran into technical difficulties with the file containing the boy's 11-12 400 freestyle relay. We will be unable to provide the race to our viewers. We apologize for the inconvenience.