Regan Smith Annihilates 200-Yard Butterfly American/U.S. Open Records With 1:48.33

Regan Smith -- Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Regan Smith Annihilates 200-Yard Butterfly American/U.S. Open Records With 1:48.33

For the second time in the past five months, a low-key 200 butterfly appearance in her home pool has resulted in Regan Smith crushing an American record. This time, the new mark was of the short course yards variety, with Smith racing the 200 fly during a break from college racing at the Arizona State-North Carolina State dual meet in Tempe, Ariz.

Smith swam a time of 1:48.33 to beat the previous American and U.S. Open records by more than a second. The American and U.S. Open records had belonged to Ella Eastin at 1:49.51 since February 2018, with Smith’s best time of 1:49.78 from March 2021 making her the second-quickest woman ever. As she raced Friday afternoon, Smith was aggressive over the first half of the race, as is her style, but she was able to sustain her speed and close well.

Compared to Eastin’s old record, Smith was faster on every 50 except the third, and by the halfway point, it was clear that she was capable of a record-breaking performance.

Smith (2023): 24.75, 52.35 (27.60), 1:20.53 (28.18), 1:48.33 (27.80)
Eastin (2018): 25.27, 53.51 (28.24), 1:21.38 (27.87), 1:49.51 (28.13)

Smith, Eastin, Elaine Breeden and reigning NCAA champion Emma Sticklen are the only swimmers to ever crack 1:50 in the event.

The last time Smith raced a 200 fly at Mona Plummer Aquatic Center, it was long course, and she swam a 2:03.87 in the 200-meter fly in early June to smash the existing American record and beat her own best time by two seconds. The time made her the fourth-fastest woman in history, and  although she was unable to replicate the swim later on in the summer, it was the first in a series of extraordinary swims for Smith as she swam her fastest times in years in her signature backstroke events.

Smith ended up winning bronze in the 200 fly at the World Championships along with silver medals in all three backstroke races and gold in the women’s 400 medley relay.

A handful of other Arizona State-trained pros competed exhibition Friday during the meet.Olivia Smoliga rocked a time of 21.66 in the 50 freestyle, Ryan Held swam a 19.25 in the same splash-and-dash with Drew Kibler second (19.81). Chase Kalisz swam a time of 1:54.46 in the 200 breaststroke, with Grant House making a rare appearance in the stroke to take second (1:58.87). Later on in the meet, Smith posted a time of 52.85 in the 100 IM, with Smoliga coming in behind her at 54.04.

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robert kravutske
robert kravutske
5 months ago

you go girl…..tough girl……tough event…….new record!!!!!

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