Chase Kalisz Dials Up Strong 400 Individual Medley At U.S. Open; Daniel Diehl Breaks Own NAG Record


Chase Kalisz Dials Up Strong 400 Individual Medley At U.S. Open

Over the last couple of years, Chase Kalisz has occasionally suggested his days in the 400-meter individual medley were numbered. As a Team USA veteran, Kalisz has teased moving away from the grueling discipline, only to reappear on the entry sheets time and again. And while there may be a day when Kalisz indeed waves goodbye to the 400 medley, it doesn’t seem to be on the immediate horizon.

Complementing his triumph in the 200 individual medley from the previous night, Kalisz claimed top honors in the 400 I.M. during Friday night’s action at the U.S. Open at the Greensboro Aquatic Center. After grabbing the top seed in the morning preliminaries, Kalisz significantly upped the pace during finals, clocking a meet record of 4:10.09 to easily beat the field.

The reigning Olympic champion, Kalisz earned the bronze medal in the 400 medley at this year’s World Championships. His time on Friday night was just two-plus seconds off his 4:07.47 effort from the World Champs, which is a positive development considering it is December. Despite the superb time, Kalisz indicated in a post-race interview that he felt the performance was “sloppy” and didn’t meet his standards. That commentary is a reflection of the expectations that Kalisz carries to the deck.

Out in 56.55 for the opening butterfly leg, Kalisz went through the midway point in 2:00.84 and followed at the 300-meter mark in 3:10.69. Kalisz closed with a freestyle split of 59.40 and finished more than eight seconds clear of runnerup Baylor Nelson (4:18.38).

Kalisz is one of several United States National Team members who have adjusted their training base in recent months. When Jack Bauerle retired from his post at the University of Georgia earlier this year, Kalisz opted to move out to Arizona and again train with Bob Bowman, the man who guided Kalisz during his younger years. As part of that arrangement, Kalisz also gets to work Frenchman Leon Marchand, the reigning world champion and a standout at Arizona State.

Daniel Diehl Drops Own NAG Record

In the morning prelims, up-and-coming standout Daniel Diehl broke the National Age Group (NAG) record in the 17-18 classification in the 100 backstroke, going 53.11. At night, Diehl lowered the record further, as he won the race and stopped the clock in 53.07. Going into the day, Olympic champion Ryan Murphy was the NAG record-holder in the 17-18 grouping.

Diehl was actually faster than Murphy’s record as a 16-year-old, thanks to a 53.27 swim from the Junior Pan Pacific Championships. But he needed to officially break the record as a 17-year-old, and was able to get the job done. After his race, Diehl indicated he was targeting the world junior record in the event, which belongs to Russia’s Kliment Kolesnikov at 52.53.

In Other Action:

Olympian Jake Mitchell, now training in Gainesville, put together a wire-to-wire victory and touched the wall in a solid 1:47.38. Mitchell was followed by Zane Grothe, who was closing hard and registered a mark of 1:48.15.

In the 100 butterfly, Luke Miller threatened the 52-second barrier and prevailed in 52.06, while Lithuania’s Aleksas Savickas was quickest in the 100 breaststroke (1:00.54).

U.S. Open Results

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