July 13. Separated by 3,000 miles, teenagers Kaitlyn Sandeno and Fran Crippen, turned in the top women's and men's times in the 800 meter freestyle on the first day of competition of the two Cadillac Challenge Swim Series meets being held simultaneously in California and New York.
On the West Coast Sandeno won the women's event at the Janet Evans Invitational, being held at the Olympic Pool at the University of Southern California. Sandeno, 17, even split the race to win in 8:38.66, two seconds faster than Costa Rican Olympic champion Claudia Poll, 27, at 8:40.70. Fifteen year-old Kalyn Keller was third in 8:47.39.
On the East Coast, Crippen, the brother of Olympic hopeful Maddie Crippen, turned in a solid 8:05.58 to easily outdistance Ricardo Monasterio (8;18.51)at the Long Island Open.
The men's event at the Janet Evans meet produced an exciting duel between South Africa's Ryk Neethling, 22, and Erik Vendt, 17. Vendt led for 700 meterss before Neethling uncorked a 56.24-second final 100 meters to secure the win in 8:06.48. Vendt followed in 8:08.09 with Aram Kevorkian third in 8:13.14. Neethling negative-split his race, clocking 4:05.95 for the first half and 4:00.53 coming home.
Thirteen year-old Kim Kelly took the women's event in Long Island in 8:58.34, four seconds faster than Krystle Eberwein (9:02.79).