USA has strong day of swimming @ Pan Pacific Championships Team USA had a strong final day of competition at the 2010 Mutual of Omaha Pan Pacific Championships, winning a gold and silver medal in both the men’s and women’s 10K open water race.
News-Sports.net - Aug 23,2010 - Team USA had a strong final day of competition at the 2010 Mutual of Omaha Pan Pacific Championships, winning a gold and silver medal in both the men’s and women’s 10K open water race. Chip Peterson (Pine Knoll Shores, N.C.) and Christine Jennings (Longmont, Colo.) took home the gold medals Sunday while Fran Crippen (Conshohocken, Pa.) and Eva Fabian (Keene, N.H.) picked up the silvers.
The men’s race was extremely competitive and came down to a sprint in the final 400 meters. Canada’s Richard Weinberger was in the lead with 2K to go and was followed closely by Peterson and Crippen through most of the race. The finish came down the home stretch and Peterson broke first and was able to out touch Crippen and Weinberger at the finish. Peterson’s time was 1:56:00.02, while Crippen finished in 1:56.02.74 and Weinberger finished in 1:56:02.98.
“I know the Americans the best and they were all behind me so I was thinking if I can get in the lead here and break away a little bit and make some of those guys work that it would benefit me in the end,” Peterson said after his swim.
Peterson said much of the win was owed to his strategy and the timing of his sprint at the end of the race.
“This is exactly the same course that Nationals was at and at Nationals I went a little bit too early, and the last couple of stokes I was struggling to finish,” Peterson said. “I think that I timed it much better this time and I was able to keep my legs going the whole way into the finish which was fantastic.”
On the women’s side, Fabian and Jennings led for most of the race and were challenged by Australia’s Melissa Gorman. Still, Jennings was able to hold off the pack to claim the gold.
“It means a lot,” Jennings said. “I’m just really excited. I had so many people behind me totally backing me up.”
Jennings finished with a time of 2:00:33.83 and Fabian finished in 2:00:35.76 for the silver. Team USA’s Emily Brunemann (Crescent Springs, Ky.) and Haley Anderson (Granite Bay, Calif.) finished the race third and fourth, however, Pan Pacific Championship rules prohibit a country from having more than two swimmers on the medal stand. Australia’s Gorman picked up the bronze medal as Anderson and Brunemann were ruled ineligible for the medal.
Chloe Sutton (Mission Viejo, Calif.), who represented the USA in open water at the 2008 Olympics, was disqualified just over an hour into the race after receiving her second yellow card, resulting in a red card and the disqualification. The referees ruled that the infraction was the same each time and said that Sutton pulled on a turn buoy.
“I don’t really know exactly what I was disqualified for, but it’s not a big deal,” Sutton said. “I already got a gold and a silver medal this week and this race was just for fun.”