David Heron Triumphant In Return to Mission; Kiera Janzen With Lifetime Best

MISSION VIEJO, California, June 26. THE Fran Crippen Memorial TYR Swim Meet of Champions opened up with distance night in Mission Viejo.

In his return meet here at Mission Viejo, former Nadadore and current Tennessee Volunteer David Heron snagged victory in the men’s 1500-meter free with a 15:24.82. This is the headline event as the meet is named in honor of former Nadadore Fran Crippen, and the 1500 free was his signature pool competition. Heron’s time cut 11 seconds from his in-season best of 15:35.53 from last year’s edition of the TYR SMOC. It’s also his fourth-best time ever. That’s an impressive drop in just one year of training at Tennessee.

Island’s Eric Hedlin took second in the event with a 15:27.44 after initially drawing close to Heron at the 1000-meter mark. Janardan Burns, another former Nadadore, placed third overall in 15:34.15.

Minnesota’s Kiera Janzen posted a lifetime best in the women’s 800-meter freestyle for the win with a time of 8:36.43. That effort beat her previous best of 8:37.50 set at the 2013 U.S. Open just about a year ago. Prior to that, her best had been an 8:44.69. That’s a huge drop in just two years for Janzen.

Janzen’s teammate Ashley Steenvoorden put up a second-place time in the event with an 8:37.59. That’s still five seconds off her in-season best of 8:32.93 from the 2012 edition of this meet, but good enough for second tonight. Keyano’s Tabitha Baumann wound up third overall in the timed final event with an 8:42.84.

This meet is named in honor of Crippen, a World Champion bronze medalist in the 10K event in 2009, who passed away during an open water FINA event in 2010. He died at the age of 26 during the comeptition in Fujairah, UAE