COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, January 21. THE stats department at USA Swimming certainly keeps its loyal following of swim geeks well fed with information, and this weekend it produced yet another gem.
Shortly after the completion of the Arena Grand Prix in Austin, @USASwimStats tweeted out the following times progression from swims in Austin dating back to 2012.
Austin Grand Prix comparison of Top 3 swims over the last three years: pic.twitter.com/r9OeGCB9b5
— USA Swimmming Stats (@USASwimStats) January 20, 2014
In an elegant single-image display, USA Swimming Stats managed to put together an incredible amount of data in one single helping.
Although, comparing the beginning of an Olympic year in 2012 to the beginning of either a World Championship (2013) or Pan Pacific Championship (2014) year might not be completely fair, there’s some interesting information to be gleaned.
First and foremost, with Olympic star Missy Franklin now following the California Golden Bear training schedule as a freshman, Austin really missed the firepower that she brought to the table the last two years. In 2012, she won the 100 back and 200 back, and finished second in the 100 free. Then, in 2013, she claimed the 100 back, 200 back, 100 free and 200 free. If you eliminate Franklin from the equation in 2012 and 2013, the times are much more comparable from very fast across the board in 2012 and 2013 to a bit slower this year.
Although, the one place that the previous two years lacked in the women’s events were the distance freestyle events, and Katie Ledecky drastically improved the times in the events she raced compared to 2012 and 2013 when she was not in Austin.
On the men’s side, Yannick Agnel definitely made a big impact, making his event’s times faster than the previous two editions, especially with a huge time drop in the 1500 free with a 15:07.76.