PHOENIX, Arizona, August 28. MACK Horton continues to be the star swimmer at the world junior swimming championships, and today he put together an amazing 800 meters to win with a 7:45.67 that is fifth-fastest in the world for 2013. Horton dropped 11 seconds off his best time and with this swim, made a big statement that he’s going to be a major player in Australian distance swimming very, very soon. Horton will be a part of the 800 free relay tomorrow and then have a day off before tackling the 1500 freestyle on Saturday.
A couple of upsets also highlighted today’s competition in Dubai. The United States went 1-2 in the girls 200 backstroke, with Kylie Stewart taking the win in 2:09.74 and Kathleen Baker second with a 2:10.68. Daria Ustinova of Russia, who made the final in this event three weeks ago at the world championships in Barcelona, settled for third with a 2:10.79. Another surprise came in the girls 100 free, where Siobhan Haughey from Hong Kong won with a 54.47 over Ruta Meilutyte and Cierra Runge.
Tomorrow’s final will feature Ruta Meilutyte in the 100 breaststroke final. She was four tenths off her world record in the 50 breast, and could at the very least get under 1:05 in the final. We’ll also likely see national high school record holder Ella Eastin in the final of the 200 IM, three days after she won the 400 IM in a near lifetime best time. We’ll bring you the results of tomorrow’s finals on swimmingworld.com.
Washington, D.C., officially put its hat in the ring to be one of the possible cities to host the 2024 Olympic Games. It’s one of six cities that will try to convince the U.S. Olympic Committee to pick it as the country’s official candidate city when the International Olympic Committee begins reviewing possible choices. The USOC won’t start the process until 2015, with the IOC picking the host of the 2024 Games in 2017.
A couple of legendary swimmers are making entertainment-related headlines this week. Let’s start in Australia, where Libby Trickett is getting ready for the 13th season of Dancing With the Stars. The recently-retired Olympic champion will be the third Aussie swimmer to join the celebrity cast since it started in 2004, and will be up against an Olympic pole vaulting champion and a former game-show host. Back here in the northern hemisphere, Michael Phelps will travel to the Toronto set of “Suits” to film a cameo for the USA Network show. Phelps has let the world know that he very much enjoys the show, and the episode featuring him will air sometime next year.