Former Florida Swimmer Becca Mann Wins 10K Open Water National Championship Second Year In A Row
US Open Water 10k Nationals – Recap and Results
By Sharon Robb
April 24, 2015—In near-perfect weather conditions at Miromar Lakes Beach and Golf Club, former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann of Homer Glen, Ill. captured USA Swimming’s 10K Open Water National Championship for the second year in a row on Friday.
Mann, 17, of North Baltimore Aquatic Club outsprinted Haley Anderson of Granite Bay, Calif. in the final stretch to win the women’s title.
Last year Mann won the 10K national title in Castaic Lake, California.
Under overcast skies in 75-degree weather, the race came down to a sprint between the four leaders on the fifth and final lap. Anderson was leading but Mann reeled her in to finish less than a half-body length ahead in 2:02.38.344 for 6.2 miles.
“I didn’t feel great out there,” Mann admitted. “I was really struggling the first 5K. After that 5K I sort of built into it. I found that I had enough speed at the end to finish it.”
Anderson, an Olympic silver medalist, was second in 2:02.38.709 followed by Ashley Twichell of Fayetteville, N.Y. in 2:02.39.903 and Emily Brunemann of Crescent Springs, Ky. in 2:02.45.022.
In the men’s 10K, Jordan Wilimovsky, 21, of Team Santa Monica, Calif. and junior at Northwestern, won in 1:54:27.928 ahead of Sean Ryan, 22, of Club Wolverine, second in 1:54:40.334 and Alex Meyer, 26, of Tennessee Aquatics was third in 1:54:40.340.
The top five men’s finishers all finished in the 1:54-range.
“I was just trying to kick as hard as I could the last little bit,” Wilimovsky said. “I’d rather just go for it and see what happens.”
Miami’s Blake Manganiello was ninth in 1:58:57.973. Former Florida Gold Coast swimmer Joey Pedraza, 27, of RallySport Aquatic Club was 16th in 2:02:14:042. Ben Lawless, 18, of University of Florida was 19th in 2:04:03.052. T.C. Smith, 16, of Sarasota Tsunami Swim Team was 30th in 2:07:52.921.
Mann, Anderson, Wilimovsky and Ryan will represent the U.S. at this summer’s FINA World Aquatic Championships in Kazan, Russia. The top two men and women in the 10K qualify.
At the world championships the top 10 men and top 10 women finishers qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
Mann, a high school senior, had already made the U.S. world team in a pool event, the 800-meter freestyle.
The open water nationals is also a selection meet for the Pan American Games and World University Games, senior and junior national teams.
The 5K men’s and women’s races are Sunday. More than 150 swimmers including 16 U.S. national team members are competing over two days in conjunction with the 2015 Open Water Festival.
A live webcast of each race is on usaswimming.org.
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org