Nominees Announced for Second Golden Goggle Awards

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, September 23. THE second edition of the Golden Goggle Awards is slated for November 14 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in Manhattan. And, the nominees for this year’s awards have been announced. Ian Crocker, Katie Hoff and Kate Ziegler led the way with three nominations each.

The Golden Goggles is an event held by the fundraising arm of USA Swimming and honors the elite American athletes in the sport over the past year. More than 100 Olympians are expected to attend the event, including the likes of Mark Spitz and Janet Evans. The entire U.S. World Championships Team, which competed in Montreal in July, will also be in attendance.

"The Golden Goggle Awards is USA Swimming’s annual year-end gala event," said Chuck Wielgus, Executive Director of USA Swimming. "We not only recognize the outstanding performances of our top athletes and coaches, but it’s also a time for our corporate partners, major donors, Olympians, alumni, swimming family members and friends to come together to celebrate the accomplishments of the past year. 2005 was an exceptional year in terms of swimming performances, so we will certainly have a lot to celebrate in November."

Hoff was nominated for Female Athlete of the Year, along with Ziegler and Natalie Coughlin, and also earned nominations for Female Performance of the Year, based on her 200 and 400 individual medley swims from the World Champs. Ziegler’s other nominations arrived in the categories of Female Best Performance and Breakout Performer.

Crocker was the only male to receive three nominations. Aside from earning a nod in the Male Athlete of the year category, Crocker was nominated for Male Performance of the Year and the Perseverance Award. At the World Champs, Crocker broke his global record in the 100-meter butterfly. He’s joined in the Male Athlete of the Year category by Aaron Peirsol and Michael Phelps.

Fans can lend their input online by voting for winners at Voting started September 22 and will continue into November. Eight-person tables are available for $8,000 and individual seats cost $1,000. An Olympian or World Championship Team member will be seated at each individual. USA Swimming will offer its members a limited number of spots at $500 a seat, to be determined by a lottery system. A portion of the proceeds from the 2005 Golden Goggles will go to help displaced family members and their loved ones from Hurricane Katrina.

Here are the nominees by category:

Male Athlete of the Year
Ian Crocker (Portland, Maine/Longhorn)
Aaron Peirsol (Irvine, Calif./Longhorn)
Michael Phelps (Baltimore, Md./Club Wolverine)

Female Athlete of the Year
Natalie Coughlin (Vallejo, Calif./Cal Aquatics)
Katie Hoff (Towson, Md./North Baltimore)
Kate Ziegler (Great Falls, Va./The Fish)

Coach of the Year Award
Ray Benecki (Fairfax, Va./The Fish)
Bob Bowman (Ann Arbor, Mich./Michigan)
Eddie Reese (Austin, Texas/Texas)
Paul Yetter (Baltimore, Md./North Baltimore)

Breakout Performer of the Year
Jessica Hardy (Long Beach, Calif./Irvine Novaquatics)
Chip Peterson (Pine Knoll Shores, N.C./Carteret Currents)
Kate Ziegler (Great Falls, Va./The Fish)

Perseverance Award
Ian Crocker (Portland, Maine/Longhorn)
Brendan Hansen (Havertown, Pa./Longhorn)
Margaret Hoelzer (Huntsville, Ala./Auburn Aquatics)

Male Performance of the Year
200 Back (Aaron Peirsol)
100 Breast (Brendan Hansen)
100 Fly (Ian Crocker)

Female Performance of the Year
200 I.M. (Katie Hoff)
400 I.M. (Katie Hoff)
1500 Free (Kate Ziegler)

Relay Performance of the Year
Women’s 4 x 200 Free Relay
Men’s 4 x 200 Free Relay
Men’s 4 x 100 Free Relay

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