INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana, June 26. TEAM USA's darling Missy Franklin picked up her second title of the U.S. Nationals and World Championship Trials with a blistering effort in the women's 200-meter freestyle event. Franklin posted the second-fastest time in the world this year, while being out under world-record pace at the 50-meter mark.
Franklin scorched the IU Natatorium with a time of 1:55.56. That performance came up just short of Camille Muffat's world-leading effort of 1:55.48 from French Nationals earlier this year in Rennes, but definitely put Franklin in contention for the world title in the event. The swim is Franklin's second fastest ever behind her 1:55.06 from the 2011 FINA World Championships. Along with her 100 free win from night one, Franklin is now two-for-two with a potential third national title later this evening in the 200-meter backstroke.
NCAP's Katie Ledecky earned herself a second individual swim after winning the 800-meter freestyle last night as Ledecky charted a 1:57.63 for second. It wasn't as fast as her eighth-ranked season best of 1:56.93 from the Mesa stop of the Arena Grand Prix, but it was plenty fast enough for the second swim in Barcelona.
Athens Bulldog Shannon Vreeland snared the third relay spot in the 800-meter freestyle relay with a third-place time of 1:58.13, and has more in the tank heading into Barcelona as her best is a 1:57.78 from last summer's Trials.
Another Bulldog Jordan Mattern snuck into the fourth relay spot with a fourth-place time of 1:58.27. That's a lifetime best by more than a second, beating her previous best of 1:59.35 from this morning's prelims. Mattern's finish definitely made Franklin happy atop the podium as the duo are former Colorado Stars teammates.
Stanford's Maya Dirado (1:58.41), Terrapins' Chelsea Chenault (1:58.74), Longhorn's Karlee Bispo (1:59.10) and Longhorn's Quinn Carrozza (2:00.15) rounded out the championship heat.
American-record holder Allison Schmitt, who suffered a surprisingly slow morning to miss the championship heat, went out hard with a 57.00 split at the 100 before closing out with a winning time of 1:58.62 in the B final.
2012 Olympian Lia Neal smoked the C final with a winning time of 1:58.87. That performance is the second best of her career, behind only a 1:58.26 from the 2011 Junior National Championships.