2020 US Open: Claire Curzan Blasts Way to NAG Record in 100 Fly; Equals Inge de Bruijn on All-Time List


2020 US Open: Claire Curzan Blasts Way to NAG Record in 100 Fly; Equals Inge de Bruijn on All-Time List

Over the past couple of months, Claire Curzan has produced a handful of stellar times in the short-course. On Friday night, she let her talent loose in the long-course pool – in a big way.

Racing at the Greensboro site of the US Open, Curzan obliterated the 15-16 National Age Group record in the 100-meter butterfly, clocking in at 56.61 for the third-fastest time in the world this year. Curzan’s performance bettered the previous standard of 57.48, set by Torri Huske. Curzan split 26.00 at the 50-meter mark and came home in 30.61, with former Cal standout Farida Osman placing second in 58.39.

Already a contender to qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next summer, the 16-year-old Curzan enhanced her status, and may have even assumed the title of favorite when the Olympic Trials are held in Omaha. Curzan is now tied as the 12th-fastest performer in history, and equal to the best time of Dutchwoman Inge de Bruijn, the 2000 Olympic champion and former world-record holder. Among Americans, only Dana Vollmer (55.98) and Kelsi Dahlia (56.37) have been faster, and Dahlia meet Curzan in the chase for Tokyo invitations.

With plenty of time for Curzan to improve, it is not unrealistic to believe she can chase an Olympic medal, provided she successfully negotiates Trials. At the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Vollmer won the bronze medal in 56.63.

“I didn’t know what to expect coming into this, but I couldn’t be happier,” Curzan said on the Olympic Channel after her race. “I really can’t put this into words right now.”

Curzan also won the 100 backstroke in 1:00.30, narrowly edging Katharine Berkoff (1:00.38). Rachel Bernhardt and Micah Sumrall engaged in a quality duel in the 100 breaststroke, with Bernhardt getting the win in 1:07.67. Sumrall was timed in 1:08.13.


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Leigh Collins
3 years ago

She is a force to be reckoned with!

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