CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina. EARLIER today at the USA Swimming-sanctioned UNC Meet on the Hill, Erika Braun earned a spot in the women's 50 freestyle at the Olympic Trials, making her the second woman aged 40 and over to swim the sprint event in Omaha.
Braun, representing the Marlins of Raleigh, swam a 26.32 to barely surpass the 26.39 qualifying time. It's a lifetime best for the 40-year-old, who had come close to qualifying for Trials on three separate occasions in the past month. At the All-American Nike meet in Nashville on April 20, Braun posted times of 26.42 and 26.47. And two weeks ago at the RSA long course invitational, she swam a 26.48.
Braun will not be the oldest female swimmer at the Olympic Trials. That distinction belongs to Dara Torres, who will be 45 years old when she swims the 50 freestyle. Torres will be gunning for her sixth Olympic Games appearance.