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Again, Dressel and Ledecky triumph in the American Olympic swimming trials



Indianapolis, Indiana – Following up his incredible triumph at the last Olympics, Caeleb Dressel secured his second individual race victory in Paris.

Don’t forget to watch Kate Douglass. At the pool, she can be among the biggest stars in the United States.

Naturally, Katie Ledecky is scheduled to participate in numerous swimming events.

At the U.S. Olympic swimming trials on Saturday night, Dressel—who won five gold medals at the Tokyo Games—touched first in the men’s 100-meter butterfly.

Following up his victory in the 50 freestyle, Dressel qualified to defend another gold medal he won in Tokyo with a winning time of 50.19 seconds.

“I think all of my swims, I executed as well as I could,” he said.

Douglass won the 200-meter individual medley to secure her spot in her third Olympic individual event.
At the last turn, she and Alex Walsh were tied for first place, but Douglass proved unbeatable on the freestyle leg.

Walsh managed to secure the second Olympic slot in 2:07.86, while she finished in 2:06.79.
Douglass, who also holds trials titles in the 200 breaststroke and 100 freestyle, has lived up to her reputation as one of the most versatile swimmers in the world.

“I’m really happy with that,” Douglass said. “I was coming into the meet trying to win all three events, but I didn’t think I’d be able to achieve that. So I’m happy I did.”

Ledecky easily won her fourth trial event, taking 8 minutes, 14.12 seconds to win the 800 freestyle. In 8:20.71, Paige Madden secured the second position.

Ledecky intends to withdraw the 200 freestyle from her Olympic program, although she will still compete in the 4×200 free relay, the 400, 800, and 1,500 freestyles.

Dressel fell very short of his 49.45 world record from the previous Olympics. However, he maintained his lead the entire way and crossed the finish line over half a body length ahead of 17-year-old Thomas Heilman, who placed second for Paris in 50.80.

At the Summer Games, Dressel plans to swim in up to three relays, which would bring him very near to his Tokyo program of six events. The mixed relay was the sole competition that he lost three years prior.

“It’s tough making it through the trials,” Dressel said. “This truly is the hardest part.”

The 100 freestyle is the only individual gold that Dressel will not be able to defend in Paris. With a third-place finish in his first event of these trials, he was left out.

Dressel will enter these Olympics with a little less fanfare than he did three years ago, when he was being hailed as the new Michael Phelps. This is after he decided to give up swimming in the middle of the 2022 world championships, which resulted in a lengthy break that he needed to rediscover his passion of the sport.

Dressel is well aware that at his tournaments this year, people from all around the world have posted faster timings. He freely acknowledges that it’s possible he won’t set another career personal best in swimming. However, he remains a man who excels in high-stakes performances, which is what Paris will provide.

“I know I’m the defending champ,” Dressel said “There’s no way around that. But I think I’m chasing some of those guys as well.”

Seeing his 4-month-old baby, August Wilder, and his wife, Meghan, in the stands at Lucas Oil Stadium was possibly the biggest delight of these trials for him.

“My son got to watch me make an Olympic team,” Dressel said, breaking into a big smile. “He will not not remember it. But I’ll tell him, trust me. I’ve got pictures to prove it.”

Heilman will also participate in the 200 butterfly, which he won at the trials to earn a spot on the U.S. swim team at the youngest age since Michael Phelps in 2000 at the age of 15.

“The butterfly is in good hands with this guy,” Dressel said, motioning toward Heilman. “He’s scary, scary.”

On the final night of the trials, Walsh will finally make the team and swim in the Olympics alongside her sister Gretchen.

“It means the world,” said Alex Walsh, who competed without her sister in Tokyo. “I didn’t know if I was going to make it to Paris after she made it. This is a dream we’ve been dreaming for so long.”
On the last night of the competition, Simone Manuel—the first Black woman to win an individual gold medal in swimming—will have one more opportunity to qualify for the team in an individual event.
After finishing in fourth place in the semifinals on Saturday night, Manuel qualified for the 50 freestyle final on Sunday, securing her spot in her third Olympics as a member of the 4×100 free relay.
Top qualifier Gretchen Walsh finished in 24.06, barely seconds ahead of Torri Huske in 24.09. Next in 24.48 was Abbey Weitzeil, who, like Manuel, has secured a relay swimming position on her third Olympic team.