Newcomer Kalisz stuns Olympic champ Lochte, earns Rio 400m ticket
Newcomer Chase Kalisz out duelled Olympic champion Ryan Lochte in the men’s 400 metres individual medley final at the US Olympic swim trials on Sunday, clinching the first ticket to the Rio Games.other sports Updated: Jun 27, 2016 12:28 IST
Newcomer Chase Kalisz out duelled Olympic champion Ryan Lochte in the men’s 400 metres individual medley final at the US Olympic swim trials on Sunday, clinching the first ticket to the Rio Games.
The stage was set for the opening showdown of the trials in the morning heats when Kalisz narrowly pipped Lochte at the wall but the 22-year-old left no doubt in the final as he pulled away from the 2012 London gold medallist over the final two legs clocking four minutes, 9.54 seconds.
”I’m glad to get this one out of the way, this one for me was a lot more stressful than I could imagine Rio could be,” Kalisz, who is headed to his first Olympics, said after becoming the second fastest in the world this year.
Lochte led by nearly two lengths after the butterfly and backstroke.
But he faded badly in the back half to finish third as 20-year-old Jay Litherland powered past the five-time Olympic champion in the freestyle final leg to also likely grab a Rio berth.The winner in each event automatically qualifies for Rio in August, with second place finishers also usually earning tickets.
Lochte, an 11-time Olympic medallist seeking to make his fourth US team, said after the race he had pulled his groin in the morning heat, leaving some question as to whether he will be able to compete in all his races.
“I thought about it this morning scratching but you know, it’s the Olympic trials,” said Lochte. “If I had broken a leg I would still go out there and swim.
“I’m going to keep working on it day in and day out and hopefully it gets better.”