Nov. 13, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind.-- Purdue men's swimming looks to post its top times of the fall competition season this week when it competes at the three-day, six-session Minnesota Grand Prix, a USA Swimming-sponsored meet that is first competition of the Arena Grand Prix Series.
Action is set for Thursday through Saturday at the University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis. Preliminaries begin daily at 10 a.m. ET and finals are set for 7 p.m. ET.
Purdue will be traveling 24 men's swimmers for the three-day meet. The men's divers will be competing along with the entire Purdue women's team at next weekend's Ohio State Invitational in Columbus. The men's swimmers that did not travel this weekend will be the primary competitors at next Friday's home dual meet against Miami (Ohio).
Even though the Minnesota Grand Prix is a short course yardage meet, because it is a USA Swimming competition it will feature a large amount of professional and independent club swimmers. Olympic gold medalists Claire Donahue, Conor Dwyer, Jessica Hardy, Matt McLean and Allison Schmitt are among the most notable swimmers expected to race this week in Minneapolis.
Purdue head coach Dan Ross predicted the Golden Gophers (co-ed) and the Boilermakers would have the most representation of any college teams. USA Swimming capped the meet at 600 competitors.
All individual events except the 1650 freestyle will be conducted on a preliminaries and finals basis. The top 32 swimmers from preliminaries will advance to finals. Eight swimmers will qualify for an A, B, C, and D heat in the finals. In the finals, the B heat will swim first, followed by the A heat. After all these heats are completed, the D heat will be contested, followed by the C heat. All but the fastest two seeded heats of relays will be contested in the preliminary sessions. The fastest two seeded relay heats in each event will be contested at the end of the "A/B" finals session. Two separate pools for men's and women's prelim heats are expected to be utilized in the morning sessions.
The Boilermakers will be competing in the 400 medley and 800 free relays for the first time this season. The 400 free relay is also on the schedule. The November Quad meet Nov. 8 at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center marked the first time this year the Purdue men had raced in that event.
The Arena Grand Prix Series runs through June and also features multiple-day meets in Austin, Texas (Jan. 17-19), Orlando, Fla. (Feb. 13-15), Mesa, Ariz. (April 24-26), Charlotte, N.C. (May 15-18) and Santa Clara, Calif. (June 19-22).
The Purdue men will be making their first appearance at Minnesota's University Aquatic Center since the 2012 Big Ten Triple Duals. Seniors Matt Friede, Eduard Galdeano, Jacob McGough, Luke Trimmer and Danny Tucker also competed in Minneapolis as freshmen at the 2011 Big Ten Championships. Friede (50 and 100 free) and Galdeano (200 fly) posted Purdue freshman records at the 2011 Big Tens that still stand. Guillermo Blanco also eclipsed the team's freshman record in the 400 IM for the first time at the 2012 Big Ten Triple Duals.
Meanwhile, Minnesota's Derek Toomey and Tucker will square off for the first time this season in the freestyle sprints. At the 2013 Big Ten Championships, Tucker and Toomey finished two-three in the 50 free behind Michigan's Bruno Ortiz. The two sprinters also posted new school records in the 100 free last season. Toomey, Tucker and Friede are all seeded among the Top 10 in the 50 and 100 free based on their personal-best times.
The Boilermakers are planning on wearing their special racing suits this week in an effort to post their top times of the fall. The fall training program was also geared toward this week's meet.
Order of Events
400 Free Relay
800 Free Relay
400 Medley Relay