Michael Phelps, Katie Ledecky top loaded Austin swim meet field
Michael Phelps is expected to lead a gathering of the most decorated active swimmers at a Pro Swim Series meet in Austin, Texas, next week, streamed on NBC Sports Live Extra.
The meet runs from Jan. 15-17, with finals at 7 ET each night. USASwimming.org will live stream all sessions, while Live Extra will live stream the Jan. 16-17 finals.
Phelps, a 22-time Olympic medalist, is slated to be joined by nine-time World champion Katie Ledecky, 12-time Olympic medalist Natalie Coughlin, 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte and five-time 2012 Olympic medalist Missy Franklin.
It’s the first time that quintet will compete in the same meet since the August 2014 U.S. Championships.
Phelps, Ledecky, Lochte and Franklin all competed at the last Pro Swim Series meet in Minneapolis in November. Phelps and Franklin then took part in the Winter Nationals in December, while Lochte and Franklin helped the U.S. to a Duel in the Pool victory one week later.
U.S. swimmers are gearing up for the Olympic trials in Omaha, Neb., in June and July, when the top two finishers per individual event will make the Olympic team.
Last year, Phelps came back from a DUI arrest and suspension to post the world’s fastest times in the 100m and 200m butterfly and 200m individual medley.
Ledecky was the star of the World Championships in August, bagging a meet-topping five gold medals.
Franklin, coming off two years of NCAA competition and returning from an August 2014 back injury, also earned five Worlds medals, including a silver and a bronze in individual events.
Lochte captured his fourth straight World title in the 200m individual medley using a turn off the last wall that has since been outlawed by FINA.
Coughlin did not qualify for the World Championships team but nonetheless resurged, ranking No. 1 in the U.S. in the 100m backstroke and No. 3 in the 100m freestyle.
Times in Austin aren’t expected to be particularly fast as swimmers train to peak in the summer.
The Pro Swim Series continues after Austin with a meet in Orlando from March 3-5.
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