It was the record that wasn’t supposed to go down. The mark set by the Brazilian that no one else could touch for many years and well into the future. It withstood the “year of the suits”. It withstood many great flyers through the years. Last year, John Dillon broke this record and nearly broke 1:45 in the process. His drop was monumental and the time was scary. John is back, though most are calling him off his game. You might not even notice him, since he didn’t swim the event at NESCACs. Will you notice him come Friday night?
2 times in the top 10 come from February. The rest, they come from midseason. I didn’t turn those around and confused the 2 so let me say that again in another way. 8 of the top 10 times in the 200 fly were set in December. That’s unheard of. In most events we see 2-3 of the top 10 times coming from December, not 8. This, combined with the fact that 8 of those 10 are on teams currently seeded to finish in the top 15, make this event quite a show for the fans. The only other time the 200 fly is a show is when the 10 & unders swim it and you get to watch them try to finish legally.
The top returning swimmer, other than Dillon, is Joseph Pysnik of Kenyon. The junior comes in a second off his entry time in 2010. He didn’t drop much time last year so it’s uncertain if he will get back to that form again this year. Mackenzie Perry, whose name could also be Perry Mackenzie and it would work, which can’t often be said, enters 2.5 seconds faster this year after just being outtouched by Pysnik in finals last season. The top seed in 2011, John Hu, essentially equalled his seed time in prelims which was only good enough for consols. In consols, however, he dropped 1.5 seconds and won the heat. Equaling his season best this time around, which is significantly faster, will get him into the top 8, and then, who knows.
Sleeper: Tom Medvecky. This senior has had a spotty history of tapering for NCAAs. This year he posted his best time in December and will show up in Knoxville ready to go. An overlooked finalists from a year ago, Tom comes in seeded 9th but looking to get back into the big heat. With a solid prelims times, the racer in Tom will come out and a top 3 finish is very do-able and would cap off a great career.
Winner: Pat Augustyn. Notre Dame, more like Notre Lame. Or at least that’s what why I assume Pat transferred to Emory. That or he likes attractive women. Either way, he’s been swimming really well all season and is experienced in racing faster competitors in big environment. Look for him to touch first with a 1:47-low.