When the FINA World Championships begin Friday in Kazan, Russia, the United States team may look awfully familiar to Charlotte swim fans.
Six members of SwimMAC’s elite group of professionals and Olympic hopefuls will represent the U.S. – more than any other club in the nation. Coach David Marsh will also be an assistant coach.
Stakes are high at the eight-day meet. World championships are held every two years, and the competition preceding an Olympic year is often when top performers emerge.
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Here’s a quick look at SwimMAC’s entrants:
▪ Cammile Adams – Adams, 23, a butterfly specialist, will compete in the 200 meter butterfly. She represented the U.S. in that event in the 2012 Olympics in London.
▪ Kathleen Baker – At 18, the youngest Team Elite member committed last fall to the University of California as one of the nation’s top prep recruits. She’ll swim the 100 meter backstroke.
▪ Tyler Clary – Clary, 26, won gold in the 200 backstroke in the 2012 Olympics. He has a heavy schedule, with entries in the 200 fly, 200 back and 400 individual medley, one of the sport’s most grueling events.
▪ Micah Lawrence – Lawrence, 25, is a breaststroke specialist. She competed in the 200 meter breaststroke for the U.S. at the 2012 Games. At Kazan, she’s entered in that event as well as the 50- and 100-meter distances.
▪ Ryan Lochte – Lochte’s move to Charlotte after London was a calculated gamble, but it appears to be paying off. The 11-time Olympic medalist recently posted some of his best in-season times. He’s entered in the 200 meter free and 200 meter individual medley.
▪ Tim Phillips – Phillips, 24, will compete in the 50 meter and 100 meter butterfly events and has his sights set on earning a berth on the Olympic team at trials next summer.
Charlotte’s footprint at the world championships will be even bigger if you include the international athletes who belong to Team Elite:
▪ Marko Blazevski, Macedonia - 200, 400 individual medley
▪ Kirsty Coventry, Zimbabwe - 50, 100, 200 meter backstroke; 200 individual medley
▪ Dion Dreesens, Netherlands - 4x200 freestyle relay
▪ Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, Bahamas- 50 meter butterfly, 50 meter freestyle