Townley Haas Scares American Record, Takes Down NCAA Record in 500 Free

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

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Going for his third straight NCAA title in the 500 free, Texas senior Townley Haas took the race out at a never-before-seen pace, splitting 1:35.69 at the 200 and almost swimming the first half in under 2:00. At one point, Haas was nearly three seconds under pace for the American record, which belongs to Zane Grothe at 4:07.25.

Haas was still under record-pace at the 450, only to fade slightly on the last 50. He finished in 4:08.19, breaking Clark Smith’s NCAA record of 4:08.42 set in 2017. Haas’ performance made him the second-fastest swimmer in history.

In Haas’ wake for much of the race, Cal’s Sean Grieshop ended up putting up a stellar swim for second, with a time of 4:10.29. Arizona’s Brooks Fail finished third in 4:10.77.

Michigan’s Ricardo Vargas Jacobo finished fourth in 4:12.21, ahead of Georgia’s Walker Higgins (4:12.65) and South Carolina’s Fynn Minuth (4:12.72). Also in the A-final were Texas A&M’s Mark Theall (4:16.05) and Harvard’s Brennan Novak (4:21.72).

In the B-final, Cal’s Trenton Julian crushed the field with an impressive time of 4:11.30, better than all but the top three in the A-final.

Event 3  Men 500 Yard Freestyle
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 4:08.42  23-Mar-17 Clark Smith, Texas
         Meet: M 4:08.42  23-Mar-17 Clark Smith, Texas
     American: A 4:07.25  30-Nov-17 Zane Grothe, Badger Swim Club
   U. S. Open: O 4:07.25  30-Nov-17 Zane Grothe, Badger Swim Club
         Pool: P 4:08.82  03-Dec-15 Clark Smith, Texas
    Name                 Year School            Prelims     Finals Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Final ===                        
 
  1 Haas, Townley          SR Texas             4:11.01    4:08.19N  20  
    r:+0.74  22.24        46.38 (24.14)
        1:10.82 (24.44)     1:35.69 (24.87)
        2:00.49 (24.80)     2:25.70 (25.21)
        2:51.25 (25.55)     3:17.27 (26.02)
        3:43.03 (25.76)     4:08.19 (25.16)
  2 Grieshop, Sean         SO California        4:11.11    4:10.29   17  
    r:+0.68  23.05        47.84 (24.79)
        1:12.84 (25.00)     1:38.47 (25.63)
        2:04.13 (25.66)     2:29.68 (25.55)
        2:55.16 (25.48)     3:20.54 (25.38)
        3:45.77 (25.23)     4:10.29 (24.52)
  3 Fail, Brooks           SO Arizona           4:11.51    4:10.77   16  
    r:+0.72  23.30        48.40 (25.10)
        1:13.74 (25.34)     1:39.24 (25.50)
        2:05.05 (25.81)     2:30.73 (25.68)
        2:56.17 (25.44)     3:21.27 (25.10)
        3:46.25 (24.98)     4:10.77 (24.52)
  4 Vargas Jacobo, Ricard  SO Michigan          4:13.15    4:12.21   15  
    r:+0.65  23.16        48.11 (24.95)
        1:13.55 (25.44)     1:39.07 (25.52)
        2:04.71 (25.64)     2:30.13 (25.42)
        2:55.54 (25.41)     3:21.10 (25.56)
        3:46.61 (25.51)     4:12.21 (25.60)
  5 Higgins, Walker        JR Georgia           4:12.57    4:12.65   14  
    r:+0.69  22.63        47.48 (24.85)
        1:12.94 (25.46)     1:38.28 (25.34)
        2:04.02 (25.74)     2:29.88 (25.86)
        2:55.42 (25.54)     3:21.25 (25.83)
        3:47.33 (26.08)     4:12.65 (25.32)
  6 Minuth, Fynn           SR South Carolina    4:12.74    4:12.72   13  
    r:+0.70  23.03        47.98 (24.95)
        1:13.30 (25.32)     1:38.76 (25.46)
        2:04.32 (25.56)     2:29.96 (25.64)
        2:55.72 (25.76)     3:21.52 (25.80)
        3:47.33 (25.81)     4:12.72 (25.39)
  7 Theall, Mark           SO TA&M              4:12.70    4:16.05   12  
    r:+0.69  22.81        47.63 (24.82)
        1:13.01 (25.38)     1:38.94 (25.93)
        2:05.08 (26.14)     2:31.13 (26.05)
        2:57.50 (26.37)     3:23.33 (25.83)
        3:49.68 (26.35)     4:16.05 (26.37)
  8 Novak, Brennan         SR Harvard           4:13.72    4:21.72   11  
    r:+0.76  23.42        49.04 (25.62)
        1:15.24 (26.20)     1:41.22 (25.98)
        2:07.26 (26.04)     2:33.85 (26.59)
        3:00.70 (26.85)     3:28.07 (27.37)
        3:55.35 (27.28)     4:21.72 (26.37)