By Ben Spicer–
Several Olympic athletes as well as current and former Louisville swimmers competed in the second annual TYR Derby Pro Meet at the Ralph Wright Natatorium on April 29.
The event not only features some of the world’s best swimmers, but doubles as a fundraiser for the Drowning Prevention Foundation.
This year, the format was switched up to accommodate and attract more well-known names. The competition featured three separate rounds in 50 meter races, with the two slowest athletes being eliminated in each of the first two rounds.
“It’s a fantastic celebration of swimming, I think that’s what we wanted to do. That was our vision many years ago to create this event,” Louisville swimming head coach Arthur Albiero said. “It’s an opportunity to bring a world class field with seven Olympians from Rio here.”
Olympic gold medalist Kelsi Worrell returned to the University of Louisville, where she was a four-time NCAA champion. Worrell still holds the NCAA record in the 100-fly with a time of 49.43 which she set in March 2016. She finished fourth in the final round of the women’s race.
Joao De Lucca, another former Cardinal and two-time Olympian, participated in the men’s competition. De Lucca had a successful career at Louisville, finishing with two National Championship victories in his time as a Cardinal. He finished third overall in the men’s competition.
“It’s like the who’s who of our sport … it’s a fantastic way for us to again celebrate our sport here on our campus,” Albiero said about the field.
The men’s field also featured two current members of U of L’s swim team, seniors Trevor Carroll and Grigory Tarasevich.
Three-time Olympic gold medalist Ranomi Kromowidjojo won the women’s event with a time of 24.58 seconds. Kristian Gkolmeev won the men’s event, posting a time of 22.03 seconds.