TYR Pro Series, Day Four Finals: Regan Smith Uncorks Sub-2:04 Effort in 200 Backstroke; Torri Huske, Simone Manuel, Jack Alexy Flourish

Regan Smith

TYR Pro Series, Day Four Finals: Regan Smith Uncorks Sub-2:04 Effort in 200 Backstroke; Torri Huske, Simone Manuel, Jack Alexy Flourish

Less than 100 days remain before the start of the United States Olympic Trials in Indianapolis, and the sense of urgency to be in peak form at Lucas Oil Stadium is in the air. The first three days of the Westmont stop of the USA Swimming TYR Pro Series have offered several top-flight performances, including a U.S. Open record from Regan Smith in the 100-meter backstroke.

Saturday night marks the final session in Westmont, with Smith slated to contest the 200 backstroke and Jack Alexy and Caeleb Dressel qualified for the final of the 100 freestyle. Action will also feature Simone Manuel in the 100 freestyle and Torri Huske pulling double duty in the 200 individual medley and 100 free.

Here is an event-by-event recap of what unfolded during Saturday night’s competition in the Midwest.

Full Results

Day One Finals

Day Two Finals

Day Three Finals

Women’s 200 Individual Medley

Torri Huske

Courtesy: Peter Bick

When Torri Huske climbed the blocks for the 200 individual medley, she already owned triumphs in the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly, with both wins arriving behind stellar times. However, both of those victories might take a back seat to what Huske managed in the 200 IM. Leading from the start, Huske became the No. 8 American in event history with a personal-best time of 2:08.83.

As expected, Huske built an early lead on the butterfly leg, where she split 26.66, and she came through the midway point of the race at 59.35. The most impressive aspect of her effort, though, was Huske’s split of 37.87 on breaststroke, where runnerup Leah Hayes (2:10.62) figured to narrow her deficit. Instead, Huske slightly extended her lead, and then closed out the event with a freestyle split of 31.61.

Huske will have plenty of options for the Olympic Trials this summer in Indianapolis. While she will undoubtedly contest the 100 butterfly, she’s also a factor to qualify for the Olympics in the 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle and 200 medley.

Men’s 200 Individual Medley

Chase Kalisz and Hugo Gonzalez engaged in a spectacular duel in the 200 medley, with the outcome an appropriate deadlock between the world-champion athletes. Kalisz and Gonzalez shared top honors with matching marks of 1:57.76, with Kieran Smith claiming third place in 1:59.52.

Kalisz had the best splits in the field for the backstroke and breaststroke legs and took a .64 edge into the closing freestyle. But Gonzalez delivered a 28.05 effort over the closing 50 meters to forge the tie.

Women’s 200 Backstroke

Regan Smith added the latest fireworks to what has been a fabulous weekend when she dominated the 200 backstroke and established a a Pro Series standard. The American-record holder in the event, Smith produced a time of 2:03.99 to prevail by more than three seconds over fellow Olympian Rhyan White (2:07.38).

Smith went out in 29.09, which was .25 under world-record pace, and she continued to look sharp over the last three lengths. Smith touched at the midway mark in 1:00.86 and ultimately complemented previous wins in the 100 backstroke and 200 butterfly. Smith also finished second in the 100 butterfly while making a statement that she is storming toward the Olympic Trials in fine form.

Men’s 200 Backstroke

Ryan Murphy

Courtesy: Peter Bick

After squeezing into the final as the eighth seed, Olympic and world champion Ryan Murphy emerged victorious from Lane Eight by holding off Yeziel Morales. Murphy led the entire way, but Morales provided a challenge over the four lengths. Murphy touched in a winning time of 1:58.34, with Morales following at 1:58.93. The decision completed a sweep of the backstroke events for Murphy, who won the 100 backstroke on Friday night.

Women’s 100 Freestyle

Simone Manuel

Courtesy: Peter Bick

What a weekend for Simone Manuel, as the longtime Team USA standout claimed her second triumph in Westmont. Already the winner of the 200 freestyle, Manuel emerged victorious in the 100 free to close out her meet, as her time of 53.35 held off the 53.39 of Torri Huske. Manuel was also the runnerup in the 50 freestyle, which was won by Huske.

Three months shy of the Olympic Trials, Manuel has positioned herself well for a run at a third Olympic Games, and is clearly benefiting from her training with Sun Devil Aquatics. After the 2021 campaign, where she revealed she was fighting through Overtraining Syndrome, Manuel took some time away from the sport. Now, she is progressing superbly toward the summer, again ranking among the elite freestylers in the Team USA arsenal.

Men’s 100 Freestyle

Jack Alexy

Courtesy: Peter Bick

Having established himself as one of the world’s elite sprinters last summer at the World Championships, Jack Alexy put together his latest strong performance on the road to the Paris Olympics when he won the 100 freestyle over a loaded field. Second at the turn, Alexy powered down the last 50 meters and walked away with the Westmont title in 48.37, which was good for a .20 margin over reigning Olympic champ Caeleb Dressel.

Alexy turned in a pair of sub-22 efforts in the 50 freestyle on Friday night and he brought his speed to the 100 free to close out the meet. The Cal star will now turn his attention to the upcoming NCAA Championships, where the Golden Bears are the reigning team champions. Finishing behind Dressel in third place was another veteran, Ryan Held (48.66).

Women’s 1500 Freestyle

A strong weekend for Paige Madden was capped in style, as the veteran won the 1500 freestyle in 16:09.93. Madden charged to the front of the field and was never challenged on the way to a 21-second victory over Brazil’s Beatriz Dizotti (16:30.86). In Westmont, Madden had previously finished second in the 400 freestyle, third in the 800 freestyle and was the fourth-place finisher in the 200 freestyle.

Men’s 1500 Freestyle

Narrowly edged in the 800 freestyle on the opening night of the meet, Michael Brinegar couldn’t be stopped over 30 laps on the last night of action in Illinois. A 2020 Tokyo Olympian, Brinegar posted a time of 15:09.72 to defeat runnerup Luke Whitlock (15:12.46) by nearly three seconds.


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