Tag Archives: Simone

Simone Biles asks fans to ‘tell me a secret’ to fight Tokyo boredom, report says

The world’s top gymnast is limited to her hotel room and practice while under Olympics COVID protocols, so she posted a question on Instagram.

U.S. gymnast Simone Biles is getting ready to win what could be a rare second Olympic all-around gold medal. But before that happens, she has to wait around in Tokyo under strict COVID-prevention rules.

That prompted Biles to reportedly posted in an Instagram Story recently: “Tell me a secret – I’m bored.”

Reuters reports Biles is unable to go anywhere but her hotel or practice, prompting the callout that was quickly responded to by her 4.4 million followers. And some of their comments were pretty deep.

One person reportedly announced they were pregnant, which got a “Congrats!” from Biles.

Another reportedly told the gymnast they had not told their father they were gay.

“Tell him, be free, be yourself. I support you,” Biles reportedly responded. “For anyone else struggling with telling family or friends, just know I will always welcome you with open arms on my page and platforms.”

Other secrets revealed to Biles reportedly included someone who was spending their inheritance on presents for their mothers and someone who said they muted a close friend on Instagram because “she posts the dumbest things.”

Biles concurred.

“Me too. Sometimes it’s needed,” she reportedly said.

Because it was posted to Instagram Story, the post automatically disappeared after 24 hours.

Biles, coming off her 7th U.S. gymnastics title, is in good position to repeat her haul of five medals from the 2016 Olympics in Rio. 

The women’s gymnastics team final is a week from Tuesday and the individual all-around is two days later. The individual apparatus finals are during the second week of the Games.

[embedded content]

Read more
This post originally posted here CBS8 – Sports

Simone Biles opens up about going out on her own terms

As gymnastics star Simone Biles looks to become a repeat Olympic champion, she’s opening up about her future and when she’ll know it’s time to call it quits.

WASHINGTON — U.S. gymnastics star Simone Biles and her teammates arrived in Tokyo Thursday ahead of the Olympic Games. 

Biles spoke to the Associated Press on Wednesday before taking off for Japan and said she’s excited to be representing the U.S. again at the Olympics, but knows it’s going to be a completely different environment than the 2016 Rio Games. Japan’s government has banned fans, including athletes’ family members, from attending any competitions to try to contain surging COVID-19 cases. 

“Yeah, it’s going to be really tough, I think, only because I’ve never competed without a crowd. I’ve never competed without my family there. So to be very different. But I know they’ll be there in spirit and we’ll be chatting before and after the meet. So hopefully fingers crossed it goes well,” Biles explained. 

The 24-year-old is looking to become the first female gymnast to become a repeat Olympic champion in more than 50 years.  

Biles is featured on the cover of the latest issue of Sports Illustrated and discussed when it might be the right time to call it quits. She explained that she wants to go out on her own terms.

“Always have to give something you love up on your own time and I think that’s why I would stop because I wouldn’t want it taken from me and have a doctor say you can’t do this or it’ll be really hurtful to you, so I’d rather just hang it up myself and you just have to learn when it’s your time, whenever that is,” she explained.

After winning four gold and one bronze medals at the 2016 Games, Biles is ready to headline an American team heavily favored to win a third straight Olympic title.  

[embedded content]

Read more
This post originally posted here CBS8 – Sports

Check out this stop-motion video of Simone Biles made of 100 paper cutouts

Each paper cutout in the video is one part of a Simone Biles floor routine tumbling pass, but her leotard constantly changes color.

A Seattle artist’s stop-motion video of Simone Biles, made out of paper cutouts of the top gymnast in the world, has gone viral and has caught the eye of Biles herself. It’s a celebration of the woman dubbed by many as the greatest of all time as she heads to her second Olympics in Tokyo this month.

Rudy Willingham’s video has received more than 50,000 likes and counting since being posted more than a week ago.

The video involves 100 images of Biles printed out on paper. Each image is one part of a Biles floor routine tumbling pass.

You see Biles’ face, hands and legs, but her leotard is cut out of the paper. Willingham put each piece of paper over a different background (such as the U.S. flag), so that each image has a different leotard.

Put each frame together, thanks to some video editing software that helped line everything up, and you get one fluid video with an ever-changing leotard, set to Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.”

“The backgrounds are switching so fast that it almost forces your brain to focus on whatever is moving on the paper, and it turns into a kaleidoscope of color, a moving piece of art,” Willingham said, according to USA TODAY.

Biles reportedly reposted the video on her Instagram story.

Joining Biles on the 2020 U.S. women’s Olympics gymnastics team are first-time Olympians Suni Lee, Jordan Chiles, Grace McCallum, MyKayla Skinner and Jade Carey. Skinner and Carey will only compete in individual events while the other four will also be in the team competition. Carey earned her own spot through the World Cup circuit, separate from the Olympic trials.

[embedded content]

Author: Travis Pittman
Read more here >>> CBS8 – Sports

Shocking: Simone Manuel fails to make the final in 100 freestyle at Olympic trials

One of the top stars of the 2016 Rio Olympics for Team USA still has a chance to qualify for Tokyo games in the 50-meter freestyle.

OMAHA, Neb. — Caeleb Dressel locked up his spot for Tokyo, where he’s expected to be one of the biggest stars in the Olympic pool.

Simone Manuel got left behind.

In the biggest surprise yet at the U.S. swimming trials, the defending Olympic women’s champion in the 100-meter freestyle failed to advance from the semifinals Thursday night.

Manuel, who tied for the gold at the Rio Olympics to become the first Black female ever to win an individual swimming event, finished fourth in the first semifinal heat at 54.17 seconds.

She just missed a spot in Friday night’s final when five swimmers went faster in the second semifinal heat, with Erika Brown taking the eighth spot in 54.15 — two-hundredths faster than Manuel.

“I’m an Olympic champion,” a tearful Manuel said, seeking solace in her 2016 accomplishments. “It’s still a tough pill to swallow.”

There were no such concerns for Dressel, who romped to victory in the men’s 100 free in 47.39.

He finally got a chance to shine on Day 5 of the trials after a long week of waiting. When Dressel saw a “1” beside his name, he hopped on the lane rope, splashed the water and pumped his arms to whip up the crowd.

“It’s a huge weight off my shoulders,” Dressel said. “I’m excited to get the job done and move forward.”

In the wake of Michael Phelps’ retirement, Dressel has emerged as the next big thing in men’s swimming. After winning two golds medals at the 2016 Rio Games, he really shined at the last two world championships.

In 2017, Dressel captured seven gold medals in Budapest — joining Phelps and Mark Spitz as the only swimmers to win that many races at a major international meet.

Dressel followed up with six golds and two silvers at the 2019 championships in Gwangju, becoming only the second swimmer to take as many as eight medals after Phelps.

A giant picture of Dressel adorns the outside of the downtown Omaha arena where the trials are being held.

“All the fluff that comes with it, your name on the building, is cool,” he said. “But it adds a little bit different pressure to it.”

While Dressel isn’t expected to swim enough events in Tokyo to challenge Phelps’ record of eight golds from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, he could be in the mix for as many seven medals if he’s included on all the relays.

Dressel isn’t thinking that far ahead. He’s still got two more individual events at the trials, and he’s heavily favored in both.

“You can’t win five, six or seven medals if you don’t qualify for the events,” he said. “I’m focused on qualifying right now.”

A fading star of the American team is still in the mix for Tokyo.

Thirty-six-year-old Ryan Lochte advanced to the final of the 200 individual medley, his only realistic chance to qualify for his fifth Olympics and redeem himself for the embarrassment of Rio, where he lied about being robbed at gunpoint during a boisterous night on the town.

But Lochte has his work cut out for him. Michael Andrew dominated the semifinals with a time of 1:55.26 — fastest in the world this year. Lochte was the sixth-fastest qualifier at 1:58.65, nearly 3 1/2 seconds behind Andrew.

Only the top two will make the Olympic team Friday.

At least Lochte made it to the final.

Manuel’s failure to advance in the 100 free means she won’t be in the mix for the relays, either. She still has a chance to qualify for the team in the 50 free — an event she took silver in at Rio as part of a four-medal haul.

Overcome by emotions, Manuel said she arrived in Omaha knowing it would be a struggle just to make the team because of health and emotional issues. She conceded that the racial turmoil since George Floyd’s death took a toll on her.

“That’s what’s giving me peace,” she said. “I know I did everything I possibly could to even be here, and that makes me proud. I continued to stay strong during this process even when there were times when I wanted to give up.”

Natalie Hinds and Olivia Smoliga were the top qualifiers in 53.55. Allison Schmitt, who already made the team in the 200 free, advanced to the final with the sixth-best time (54.08).

In the men’s 200 breaststroke, Nic Fink made the Olympics for the first time at age 27, winning with a time of 2:07.55 in a 1-2 finish with club teammate Andrew Wilson.

Fink failed to finish in the top two at either the 2012 or 2016 trials, and he had another heartbreak with a third-place showing in the 100 breast this year.

Now, finally, he’s got his long-sought spot on the Olympic team.

“It’s something I can’t really describe,” Fink said. “Relief is only the beginning of what I’m feeling right now. It’s a long journey to come here. I’ve had so much support and help. I’m so grateful for this opportunity and to come back after getting third in the 100.”

Wilson, who swims with Fink on the Athens Bulldog Swim Club in Georgia, earned a likely second individual event at the Tokyo Games with a runner-up finish in 2:08.32. Wilson also finished second in the 100 breast.

“It’s really fun to see it pay off for Andrew and I,” Fink said.

Kevin Cordes, who made the 2016 Olympic team in both breaststroke events, came up short this time. He was a distant fourth, nearly 2 seconds behind Wilson.

Hali Flickinger won the 200 butterfly to expand her program for Tokyo. She already had a runner-up finish in the 400 individual medley.

Flickinger finished seventh in the 200 fly at the Rio Olympics. She’s hoping to contend for a medal after moving to Arizona to swim for Bob Bowman,

“It’s helped tremendously, and my swimming is really showing that,” Flickinger said. “I love the group that I train with every single day, along with Bob. I’m relaly grateful.”

The U.S. team added another first-time Olympian when Bobby Finke of Clearwater, Florida won the men’s 800 freestyle, an event that will make its Olympic debut in Tokyo.

He covered 16 laps in 7:48.22, holding off runner-up Michael Brinegar (7:49.94). Ross Dant just missed an Olympic spot, finishing a mere 72-hundredths behind Brinegar in a thrilling finish.

Olympic gold medalists Ryan Murphy and Lilly King were top qualifiers in their semifinals events.

Murphy led the way in the 200 backstroke at 1:55.60, setting him up for another Olympic event after his win in the 100 back. He was a double gold-medalist in those races at Rio, and the American men haven’t lost a backstroke event since the 1992 Barcelona Games.

Likewise, it was King advancing in the 200 breaststroke at 2:22.73, which she hopes to add to her Olympic schedule after winning the 100 breast.

This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

Seven for Simone: Biles claims another US Gymnastics title

Simone Biles finished nearly five points ahead of runner-up Sunisa Lee and good friend and teammate Jordan Chiles.

FORT WORTH, Texas — Simone Biles looks ready for Tokyo. So it seems, are the leading contenders vying to join the reigning world and Olympic gymnastics champion in Japan next month.

The 24-year-old Biles claimed her seventh U.S. title Sunday night, delivering another stunning — and stunningly easy — performance that served little doubt the pressure surrounding her bid to become the first woman to win back-to-back Olympic all-around gold in more than 50 years is only pushing her to even greater heights.

Shaking off a somewhat sloppy start Friday, at least by her impeccable standards, Biles put on a four-rotation showcase on what separates her from every other gymnast on the planet. Her score of 119.650 was nearly five points better than runner-up Sunisa Lee and good friend and teammate Jordan Chiles.

While Biles’ victory was never in doubt — it rarely has been during her nearly eight-year reign atop the sport — she remains in no mood to coast. Visibly annoyed after stepping out of bounds three times during her floor routine on Friday, Biles responded the way she almost always does: by cleaning things up and expanding what is possible on the competition floor.

And to think she didn’t even bother with her latest innovation, a Yurchenko double-pike vault she drilled twice at the U.S. Classic last month that caught the attention of everyone from LeBron James to Michelle Obama. Instead, she opted for two with slightly lower difficulty that she completed so casually it was hard to tell if she was in front of an arena that screamed for her at every turn or just fooling around at practice back home in Houston.

Not that it mattered. She still posted the top score on vault anyway. Just like she did on beam. Just like she did on floor. Just like always.

Biles started her night on balance beam and with the instrumental from Lizzo’s “Good as Hell” playing while the entire arena stopped to watch, she barely even wobbled while putting together a series that remains among the gold standard in the world on an event that’s maybe her third best.

Her floor exercise, the one that includes two elements already named after her in the sport’s Code of Points, was far more precise than it was on Friday. She was well in bounds on all but one of her tumbling passes and her 14.950 included a 6.8 D-score, which ranks the difficulty of the routine, tied for the highest by any athlete on any event at the meet.

Lee, competing on a bad ankle that sometimes left her limping around the arena, Lee appears to be gaining momentum following a sluggish return to competition last month. Behind a bars routine that is one of the most innovative and electric on the planet, Lee fended off a strong challenge from Chiles to hold on to silver.

Chiles continued her remarkable rise over the last six months, finishing runner-up to Biles for the second time in three weeks. The 20-year-old, who started training alongside Biles two years ago, is practically now a lock to be named to the U.S. Olympic team following the trials in St. Louis later this month.

The real intrigue heading into the trials might be who else can emerge from a crowded field. Leanne Wong finished fourth, with Emma Malabuyo fifth. Jade Carey, who has already secured an at-large berth to the Olympics thanks to her performance on the World Cup circuit, was sixth.

The group at the trials, however, will not include Laurie Hernandez. A two-time Olympic medalist in 2016, Hernandez did not compete after injuring her left knee on a beam dismount during warm-ups on Friday. The 20-year-old shared a picture of herself in her Captain American/Falcon-inspired leotard anyway sporting a sizable tape job over her injured knee.

This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

Simone Biles lands move no female gymnast has ever done in competition

With the Tokyo Olympics just nine weeks away, Simone Biles could make history again this weekend during her return to competition.

WASHINGTON — Simone Biles will compete this weekend for the first time in almost 600 days and it looks like she’s got something extra special in store. 
During U.S. Classic podium training on Friday, the 24-year-old Texan successfully landed a new vault no female has ever attempted in competition.  
It’s called a Yurchenko double pike. It’s a roundoff onto the springboard, a back handspring onto the vault and ends with a piked double backflip to the landing.
“I just got a little nervous on the landing,” Biles, the most decorated gymnast in World Championship history, could be heard telling her coach after almost sticking the landing. 
The four-time Olympic gold medalist has been dropping tease videos of herself practicing the Yurchenko double pike dating back to February 2020. 
Back in April, Biles confirmed she planned to debut the vault before the Tokyo Olympics. 
According to NBC Sports, Biles told reporters after podium training that she practiced the vault twice and Friday and feels “really good going into tomorrow.” 
Biles will compete during Saturday night’s session of the U.S. Classic. 
Olympic gold medalist Nastia Liukin was clearly a fan and tweeted video of the vault from another perspective. 
Biles also said during the post-training news conference that she was actually “really nervous” right before, according to ESPN
“I was like, ‘It’s ok, I’ve done this so many times.’ I’ve been doing it for months now. So I felt prepared and I knew I was prepared, it was just the initial landing out there in the arena,” she said, ESPN reported. 
It’s looking likely this could be the fifth “Biles” skill named after her in the sport’s Code of Points.

This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

Swan song? Simone Biles gears up for one more Olympic ride

The meet is the start of a frantic stretch that will end with Biles attempting to become the first woman in over 50 years to repeat as Olympic champion.

Simone Biles hops up in a chair and lets out a small sigh.
“Only 12 more weeks,” the greatest gymnast of her generation and any other says with a hint of wistfulness.
Not 12 weeks until the Tokyo Olympics begin. But until they’re over.
Don’t misunderstand. This summer, the 24-year-old has every intention on becoming the first woman to repeat as Olympic champion in more than a half-century. To drag, push and pull her sport into the future. To use her ever-expanding platform to advocate for real, substantive change within USA Gymnastics as it tries to emerge from the rubble of the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal. 
Still. Biles is tired. The five years since her glorious star turn in Rio de Janeiro — when she won four gold medals and five in all — have taken a toll. On her mind. On her spirit. And definitely on her big toes, which remain in her words “shattered.”
She needs a break. Probably an extended one. Maybe a permanent one. 
“She’s ready for the next phase,” said Cecile Landi, who along with husband Laurent has served as Biles’ coach since the fall of 2017.
For now, history beckons.
Biles will walk onto the competition floor for the first time in more than 18 months on Saturday night at the US Classic in Indianapolis. The meet marks the start of a frantic stretch in which Biles will stand at the center of a white-hot spotlight of her own creation not only as the face of gymnastics but the entire U.S. Olympic movement and perhaps the Tokyo Games themselves. 
Yes, that’s her megawatt smile featured at the end of nearly every NBC Olympic promo. The image and the ubiquity of it initially caught her off guard. Scared her even. Not anymore.
Maybe because she treats it as part of the outside noise she’s done her best to mute.
She didn’t ask to be immersed in three different social movements at once. It happened anyway. Three years ago she came forward as one of the hundreds of young women abused by Nassar — a longtime USA Gymnastics team doctor — under the guise of medical treatment. As a prominent Black athlete, she’s found herself trying to find a way to use her platform to speak out against social injustice. As a female, she’s become increasingly focused on aligning herself with entities that make empowering other women a priority, one of the driving forces behind her decision to recently leave Nike for Athleta. 
“It’s kind of scary sometimes having that power placed into my hands because I didn’t ask for it,” she said. “So I’m also getting used to that and I have to be careful about what I say because I know the impact that I can have.”
It takes discipline. There are times she finds herself with her phone in her hands, her emotions running high and an off-the-cuff message typed out. 
Thank God for the delete button. 
“Because since I’m very blunt, I have to put it in a way that is going to make it seem not as harsh,” Biles said.
Whatever emerges, she stressed, has to remain authentic. Yes, she’s aware she’s become in some ways a brand. Yet there remains something refreshingly unassuming about her worldview, even if it comes at a cost.
“She is highly scrutinized for everything she says, everything she does, everything she wears, everything that comes out of her mouth,” her mother Nellie Biles said. “I mean, it’s a hard world to live in because you’re being judged and everyone is judging you about who they think you represent.”
So Biles does her best to lead by example, an influencer in the original sense. That includes trying to nudge the sport she’s dedicated her life to into a new, more balanced era.
Biles is one of a select few still competing who are holdovers from the reign of former national team coordinator Martha Karolyi. The rigid and occasionally abrasive Karolyi oversaw USA Gymnastics’ ascendance into a global power, a rise in which the athletes were largely powerless soldiers. The system predicated on silence and obedience paved the way for prodigies like Biles to become champions. It also allowed Nassar’s predatory behavior to run unchecked.
USA Gymnastics is still trying to find a way forward, with more than a little prodding from Biles. She expressed frustration in 2018 at having to train on the Karolyi Ranch, the site of some of Nassar’s abuses. Shortly thereafter, USA Gymnastics backed out of an agreement to take over the facility. Later that year Biles chastised then-president Kerry Perry for her ineffectiveness. A month later Perry stepped down  under  pressure. Perry’s successor, Mary Bono, lasted less than a week after Biles questioned  an Instagram post in which Bono took issue with Black athletes who chose to protest police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem.
While Li Li Leung’s arrival in the spring of 2019 has provided some stability, Biles will go to work for a national governing body for which her feelings remain complex. 
“It’s hard,” she said. “Especially when you have so many pent-up emotions about it because of what I’ve been through. … I block it out, go out there represent the gym, represent the country. It’s the last thing on my mind.”
The first thing on her mind? Doing what she does better than anyone else on the planet.
Biles hasn’t spent the last five years coasting. She’s spent it pushing herself and gymnastics to places it once seemed impossible to go. She has turned the sport’s Code of Points into her own personal keepsake. She has elements named after her on multiple events, with perhaps another on vault in the offing.
Laurent Landi believes Biles is “very close to her full potential.”
Which really was the point of the whole thing. Why she opted — on her own terms, she insists — to return to the gym in late 2017. Why she stuck around for a full year after the 2020 Olympics were postponed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
It’s in a leotard with the world watching where she’s most comfortable. Doing the things only she can do, awing her peers while trying to silence her inner critic in the process. 
Still, she knows she can’t just go out there and “just” win. She’s done that for the last eight years. She needs to put on spectacle much as Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt did during their unparalleled Olympic careers.
In some ways, Biles understands she’s a victim of her own brilliance. At the same time, ask her which medal from Rio means the most and she brings up the bronze she won on balance beam when she reached down to grab the 4-inch slab of wood in the middle of her routine, a rare miscue that cost her a shot at gold.
“People were really upset,” Biles said. “Guys, it’s still a medal for the country and it’s still a medal for myself, and if anybody else was going to get bronze they would have been cheering but it was Simone so they were, like, pissed.”
Still, there’s a reason the couches in her office at the sprawling World Champions Centre in the northern Houston suburbs are gold, after all.
That’s the standard she’s set for herself. A standard she alone can touch. A standard she is embracing not out of habit or duty but choice. 
“I want to do this and nobody is forcing me,” she said. “Now, it’s just for myself.”
Enjoy the show. However long it lasts.
More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/olympic-games and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

Simone says: Olympic champion pushes for change in, out of pool

As one of the few elite Black athletes in the predominantly white sport, Simone Manuel is focused on helping swimming become more racially inclusive.

Editor’s note: The attached video is about USA Boxing setting up a gym in an abandoned apartment store to train for the Olympics.  

The pool has long been home to Simone Manuel. Outside of it, the Olympic champion is pushing herself in a new endeavor to boost the profile of women’s sports.
She joined with fellow Olympians Sue Bird, Chloe Kim and Alex Morgan to launch TOGETHXR, a media and commerce company aimed at girls and women. It will create content for social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok as well as its own YouTube channel. Billie Jean King cheered its announcement this week.
“I can’t wait to share everything we have in store,” Manuel tweeted. “There has never been a place for women that exist like this. It’s about damn time.”
Manuel has been busy making her own news in the water. She broke out at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, becoming the first Black woman to win an individual gold medal in swimming with her victory in the 100-meter freestyle, one of four medals she earned.
In 2019, she became the first American woman to sweep the 50 and 100 freestyles at the world championships.
She’s aiming to defend her 100 free title at the Tokyo Olympics, delayed for a year by the coronavirus pandemic. When Stanford closed its facilities last March, Manuel and training partner Katie Ledecky found a backyard pool to work out in.
“If you think about it, we’ve essentially been training for five years for the Olympics, so it takes a lot out of you and it takes a lot of mental strength to continue to push on through this period,” Manuel said Thursday in a virtual interview. “We’re all kind of going through the ebbs and flows of how to train for an extra year.”
Although the self-critical Manuel wasn’t pleased with her time, she won the 100 free on Thursday at the TYR Pro Swim meet in her home state of Texas. She touched in 54.62 seconds at the indoor pool in San Antonio. Abbey Weitzel was second at 54.68. Ledecky took third in 54.74.
“Got the win which was nice, but I would’ve liked to see something better than that,” she said. “I’ve always found my confidence from training and training’s been going really well.”
She competes Friday in the 200 free.
It’s Manuel’s return to national competition for the first time during the pandemic. She takes consolation in the fact that all the world’s athletes have been going through “this crazy time.”
“Obviously, we’ve been dealing with it for a year but this is not normal,” she said. “Just leaning on my teammates and leaning on my family and friends, and trying to make the best out of the situation. Sometimes when you go through obstacles, it’s you and you alone, but there’s kind of a sense of community.”
Manuel has used the unexpected time to do good in Northern California. She and a corporate partner teamed to give 1,000 laptops and free WiFi for three years to students at recreational facilities in Oakland.
RELATED: New Tokyo Olympic president tries to assure Japan on safety
RELATED: 4 Olympic greats launch ‘TOGETHXR’ to change women’s sports media landscape
RELATED: Tokyo Olympics add 12 women to executive board to reach 42%
As one of the few elite Black athletes in the predominantly white sport, Manuel is focused on helping swimming become more racially inclusive.
She’s been outspoken on Twitter about everything from social justice to the crisis in Texas involving major utility failures that left people without power, heat and running water. “We as a country need to do better to take care of everyone,” she posted.
Also Thursday, Ledecky easily won the 400 freestyle in 4 minutes, five seconds for her second victory of the four-day meet. She won the 1,500 free by over 21 seconds a day earlier.
Caeleb Dressel finished eighth in the 200 butterfly and third in the consolation final of the 100 freestyle in his only events. The dominant American men’s swimmer over the last four years was headed home to Florida to attend a wedding. Dressel got married last month.
The pandemic that delayed the Tokyo Olympics for a year has done no favors for Ryan Lochte. The 12-time Olympic medalist is bidding to make his fifth games at age 36. He failed to make it out of the preliminaries, finishing 32nd in the 100 free and 25th in the 100 breaststroke.
Blake Pieroni won the men’s 100 free in 49.19 seconds. Nathan Adrian, the 2012 Olympic champion who successfully overcame testicular cancer two years ago, won the consolation final in 49.53.