U.S. Olympic Trials: Hali Flickinger Cruises to Top Seed in Women’s 200 Butterfly

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Before the 200 butterfly even started, Hali Flickinger had already proved to be in fast form.

She made the team in the 400 IM, stunningly taking the second spot. She also swam well in the 200 freestyle before scratching to focus on the 200 fly.

In Wednesday’s 200 fly prelims, Flickinger, who made the team in 2016 in the event before changing training sites, cruised through her heat to take the top seed as expected.

Meanwhile, the second spot seems up for grabs as Dakota Luther took the second spot heading into semifinals. The top 16 advanced to the semifinals, but with one more swim to qualify for finals, it seems like anyone in the top eight this morning has a shot in this event as swimmers have to balance getting a good swim but conserving energy since they have to swim the grueling 200 fly two more times if they are in the finals. So the semifinals should see some better times unleashed.

In the first circle-seeded heat, Charlotte Hook took the lead at the halfway mark and kept the pace the rest of the way to touch first in 2:09.55 to hold off Katie Drabot (2:10.34) and Leah Gingrich (2:10.44) and Lindsay Looney (2:10.66).

In the second circle-seeded heat, Dakota Luther took the lead into the final turn and hung on to narrowly best the field. She touched in 2:08.96 to hold off Kelly Pash (2:09.09) and Regan Smith (2:09.15).

In the final circle-seeded heat, Flickinger took the early lead and hung on as Michigan’s Olivia Carter, who won the NCAA championship in the event, hung in to finish just behind. Flickinger pulled away a bit at 2:08.14 and Carter was at 2:09.78.

Top 16 Results

  1. Hali Flickinger, 2:08.14
  2. Dakota Luther, 2:08.96
  3. Kelly Pash, 2:09.09
  4. Regan Smith, 2:09.15
  5. Charlotte Hook, 2:09.55
  6. Olivia Carter, 2:09.78
  7. Katie Drabot, 2:10.34
  8. Leah Gingrich, 2:10.44
  9. Lindsay Looney, 2:10.66
  10. Amanda Ray, 2:10.85
  11. Rachel Klinker, 2:11.11
  12. Olivia Bray, 2:11.29
  13. Lillie Nordmann, 2:11.41
  14. Tess Howley, 2:11.64
  15. Taylor Pike, 2:11.70
  16. Alena Kraus, 2:12.14