LONG ISLAND, NY, July 18. BADGER'S Kim Kelly, a promising 15-year-old distance swimmer for Coach John Collins' Badger Swim Club – the same program that produced Olympians Christina Teuscher and Rick Carey – won her first major title here this evening with an 8:46.40 800 free victory.
The win came on opening night of the Long Island Grand Prix, and was accomplished at the expense of Germantown's Maddy Crippen, an All-America at Villanova and an Olympian herself. Crippen clocked 8:51.98 for second with Long Island's Sarah Daly taking third in 8:54.33.
Kelly's pr is 8:44.94 that got her sixth at last March's Phillips 66 U.S. Nationals in Minneapolis.
On the men's side, former University of Florida distance specialist and Venezuelan Olympian Ricardo Monestario won in a bit of an upset over Germantown's Fran Crippen, Maddy's younger brother, taking the gold with his 8:02.65 to Crippen's 8:03.16.
Monestario's pr and Venezuelan record is 8:02.19. He did that swim in the prelims of last summer's World Championships at Fukuoka.
Crippen's pr is 7:57.04 that won the 800 at Minneapolis. Crippen ranks as the fastest American for the year and No. 2 globally to Australia's Grant
Hackett's 7:56.44 from a meet Down Under in January.
However, Crippen has a ways to go before he matches Hackett's pr of 7:40.34 that he swam en route to the silver at Fukuoka. That time is history's second-fastest, ranking only behind the race's winner and world record-setter, Ian Thorpe, who became the first man under 7:40 with his 7:39.16.
The American record is 7:52.45 by former Cal star Sean Killion that was swum at the U.S. Nationals in Clovis 15 years ago.
The U.S. and world-record in the women's 800 free is Janet Evans' 8:16.22 from the '89 Pan-Pacs in Tokyo.
– Bill Bell