Simone Manuel Makes A Splash In Professional Debut Meet With 50 Free Win

By Karen Price | May 18, 2018, 9:50 p.m. (ET)
Simone Manuel competes in the women's 100-meter butterfly at the TYR Pro Swim Series on May 17, 2018 in Indianapolis.

 

Four-time Olympic medalist Simone Manuel won a race at her first meet as a professional swimmer, taking the women’s 50-meter freestyle victory in a scorching 24.59 seconds at the TYR Pro Swim Series Friday night in Indianapolis.

She led a field of Olympians who all scored wins on Day 3 of the meet, including Katie Ledecky in the 200-meter freestyle, Chase Kalisz in the men’s 400 individual medley, Nathan Adrian in the men’s 50 free, Melanie Margalis in the women’s 400 IM, Jacob Pebley in the men’s 200 backstroke and Blake Pieroni in the men’s 200 freestyle.

Manuel beat American Margo Geer and Canadian Taylor Ruck, who took the 100-meter freestyle ahead of Manuel the day before. Manuel’s time was the 10th fastest in the world this year.

Ledecky, who was the top seed in the women’s 200, won her third event of the meet with a time of 1:55.42, which ranks third in the world this year. She broke her own world record in the 1,500-meter freestyle on Wednesday then won the 400 free on Thursday with the second-fastest time ever. Former Stanford teammate Manuel finished second in 1:58.06.

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Kalisz led start to finish to win the men’s 400 IM. His time of 4:10.55 beat fellow 2016 Olympian Jay Litherland (4:17.09) by more than six seconds. Louisville’s Daniel Sos was third with a time of 4:18.12, a new personal best that beat his previous mark of 4:20.46, set at the 2017 world junior championships.

Three-time Olympian and five-time gold medalist Adrian won the men’s 50 freestyle in 21.97 seconds, a new season’s best. He won the 100 free on Thursday.

Margalis, who won gold in the 4x200 free at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, set a new personal best in the 400 IM with a time of 4:36.81. Ella Eastin took second and Ledecky swam the final 100 meters in under a minute to move up from seventh and finish in third with a time of 4:38.88. Margalis was second to Ledecky in the preliminaries Friday morning.

Pebley won the 200 back by two seconds, finishing in 1:57.03.

Pieroni, a gold medalist in the 4x100 freestyle in Rio, captured the 200 freestyle title and his first win as a pro with a time of 1:48.19.

The meet concludes Saturday night.

Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.