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OMAHA, Nebraska, June 25. REIGNING world champion Elizabeth Beisel put in a 4:35.72 to lead the way in the women's 400 IM at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials. The swim is a Trials textile best, beating the 4:37.67 set by Katie Hoff in Long Beach in 2004.
Beisel finished second to Hoff in the 2008 Trials with a 4:32.87 to earn a spot on the U.S. Olympic roster, a moment enshrined on SwimmingWorld.TV when her friends mobbed her at the mixed zone interview. Beisel is definitely among the mix of the top in the world in the event, especially after posting the textile best of 4:31.78 en route to her victory at the 2011 World Championships in Shanghai.
Caitlin Leverenz of Cal cruised to second in 4:39.57, looking like an easy speed swim in what is the Phelps-Lochte 1-2 battle among the women's 400 IMers in the U.S. Texas A&M swimmers Cammile Adams (4:39.84) and Sarah Henry (4:40.72) are among those who will be looking to upset the favorites. Henry turned in a lifetime best in the process of making the finale, proving a successful comeback from an ACL injury. Meghan Hawthorne (4:40.00), Becca Mann (4:42.31), Maya Dirado (4:43.07) and Haley Anderson (4:43.17) also earn spots to race for an Olympic berth this evening.
Notably, two-time reigning champion Katie Hoff, now training with T2 Aquatics, elected not to compete in the event this time around. If she could have pulled off the win, she had a chance to become just the fourth female in Trials history to threepeat. Janet Evans, Eleanor Helm and Mary T. Meagher are the only other women to go back-to-back-to-back in the history of the U.S. Trials spanning back to the 20s.
Elizabeth Beisel — 4:35.72
Caitlin Leverenz — 4:39.57
Cammile Adams — 4:39.84
Meghan Hawthorne — 4:40.00 (lifetime best)
Sarah Henry — 4:40.72 (lifetime best)
Becca Mann — 4:42.31
Maya Dirado — 4:43.07
Haley Anderson — 4:43.17 (lifetime best)