TYR Pro Championships Set to Feature Top Americans Not at Worlds, Including Simone Manuel & Michael Andrew (Psych Sheet)

Simone Manuel -- Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

TYR Pro Championships Set to Feature Top Americans Not at Worlds, Including Simone Manuel & Michael Andrew (Psych Sheet)

While most of the top swimmers in the United States are in Fukuoka, Japan, for the World Championships, a strong group of swimmers who did not qualify for the team at last month’s U.S. Nationals will be concluding their summer seasons at the TYR Pro Championships in Irvine, Calif. Highlighting the entries for this meet are 11 swimmers who were part of the U.S. Olympic team in Tokyo two years ago, including Olympic-gold-medal-winning sprinters Simone Manuel and Michael Andrew.

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Manuel took more than one year away from the sport following a disappointing Olympic season when she was affected by overtraining syndrome. She returned to training last fall at Arizona State University. Manuel returned to competition in January and swam solid times over the course of the season, but she chose not to enter Nationals, calling the decision “an investment for the future.” But she is back for the Pro Championships and scheduled to race the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle.

Manuel’s competition in the sprints will include Olympic teammates Erika Connelly (formerly Erika Brown), who had a disappointing Nationals but tied for Worlds bronze in the 50 free last year, and Catie Deloof. Additionally, Olympic silver medalists Paige Madden and Erica Sullivan will each race in the longer freestyle events after both swam in one A-final at Nationals.

Phoebe Bacon, the silver medalist at last year’s World Championships in the 200 backstroke, will race the backstroke events plus the 100 fly and 200 IM, and she will clash with college standout Isabelle Stadden in the backstrokes. The final female Olympian entered in the meet is 34-year-old Ashley Twichell, who swam the 10K open water race in Tokyo and returned to swimming this year after giving birth to her son Lochlan last year. Twichell swam the 10K at Open Water Nationals in May and qualified for the National Team.

On the men’s side, Andrew is entered after narrowly missing the Worlds team last month. Andrew appeared to qualify for the meet with his 50 butterfly win at U.S. Nationals, but a change in the U.S. selection criteria meant that relay alternates earned selection priority over winners in the 50-meter stroke events. Andrew had one last shot at getting on the team in the 50 free, but he ended up third by one hundredth of a second. Andrew is scheduled to race the 50 free, 100 fly and 100 breaststroke in Irvine.

Also on the men’s side, 400 IM Olympic silver medalist Jay Litherland will be in the pool along with Brooks Curry and Michael Brinegar. Curry was a finalist in the 100 free at last year’s World Championships but missed A-finals in both the 100 and 200 free at Nationals after an extremely quick series of qualifying heats.

Santo Condorelli, an Olympian for Canada in 2016 and for Italy in 2021, is entered in the meet in the 50 free, 100 fly and 100 free. Condorelli is attempting to represent the U.S. in international competition in the future. During his high school days, Condorelli was part of a powerhouse group for the Bolles School Sharks that included eventual Olympic champions Caeleb DresselRyan Murphy and Joseph Schooling. Condorelli owns one Olympic silver medal as a prelims swimmer from Italy’s 400 free relay squad in 2021, and he placed fourth in the individual 100 free final in 2016.

Luca Urlando, a finalist in the 200 butterfly at last year’s Worlds, is returning to national-level competition for the first time since shoulder surgery this winter. Urlando is entered in the 100, 200 and 400 free plus the 100 and 200 fly. He will face Trenton Julian, the Americans’ other 200 fly representative at Worlds last year, in that event. The other members of last year’s Worlds team competing in Irvine are freestyler Coby Carrozza and breaststroker Charlie Swanson.

Other names to watch on the men’s side include freestylers Will Gallant and Jake Magahey, breaststrokers Jake Foster and Will Licon, sprinters David CurtissJonny Kulow and Patrick Sammon and backstroker Jack AikinsGabriel Jett will race only freestyle events, while Joey Tepper is entered fresh off his return from racing open water at the Fukuoka Worlds.

On the women’s side, veteran Beata Nelson will swim a variety of events, as will more recent NCAA champions Kaitlyn DoblerPaige McKenna and Emma Sticklen. Kelly Pash and Dakota Luther, who comprise an elite butterfly trio at Texas along with Sticklen, will also race.

This meet will not follow the usual Nationals format and instead mirror the three-and-a-half day schedule of the TYR Pro Series meets during the season. The event schedule will largely mirror that found at the NCAA Championships, with the addition of the women’s and men’s 800 freestyle Wednesday before a full slate of prelims-finals racing begins Thursday with the 400 free, 200 IM and 50 free. Relays will also be included at this meet.

More information from USA Swimming is available here.

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