Olympic Gold Medalist Lochte Wins 100-Meter Individual Medley For Fourth Title
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Five-time Olympic gold medalist Ryan Lochte is getting back up to speed in the pool.
Lochte won the 200-meter individual medley in 1 minute, 58.07 seconds Sunday on the final day of the Santa Clara Grand Prix. He won the 100 butterfly and was second behind Nathan Adrian in the 100 freestyle Friday, then took the 400 IM and 200 backstroke Saturday.
“The times I posted I’m happy about,” Lochte said. “This meet was definitely a big turnaround. You wouldn’t even see me in an `A’ final before this.”
Lochte has been training heavily the past six weeks. He acknowledges not taking training seriously before then.
“I’d come in once or twice a week, maybe take a month off,” he said. “My training was just not there this year.”
Lochte hosted a reality show and made a guest appearance on “30 Rock.”
“I wish I didn’t get so caught up in the celebrity lifestyle,” Lochte said. “But my body and mind needed a break from every day training.”
Lochte said he had a lot of fun, especially with his reality show.
“It brought me and my family closer together,” Lochte said. “That was special. Being on `30 Rock’ and doing a scene with Alec Baldwin was awesome. He’s one of the funniest guys I’ve met. It was a new experience for me. If the opportunity comes up again, I’d be more than happy to do.”
While he’s placing importance on the U.S. championships that begin June 25 in Indianapolis, Lochte knows his real focus is on the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, an event he fully expects to see Michael Phelps, who announced his retirement following the London Games.
“I just have a feeling he’s going to be back,” Lochte said.
Matt Grevers and Russian Olympian Arkady Vyatchanin tied for the 100 back title, each touching at 54.47.
Teen Kevin Cordes won the 100 breast title in 1:00.97, 16-year-old Justin Wright won the 200 fly in 1:57.90 and 17-year-old Australian Mack Horton won the 1,500 free in 15:13.67.
On the women’s side, California swimmers Elizabeth Pelton, Caitlin Leverenz and Jessica Hardy each won an event on the final day. Pelton led a Cal sweep of the 100 back, winning in a personal-best 59.88. Missy Franklin, the Olympic star who will attend Cal, was second and Olympian Rachel Bootsma was third.
“I can see any one of us finishing first, second and third,” Pelton said. “I just wanted to stick to my game plan and see how that played out. I didn’t have any time goals.”
Franklin will have just the second coach of her career in Teri McKeever when she arrives in Berkeley in the fall. She’s been with Todd Schmitz of the Colorado Stars for the past 11 years.
“Sure it will be a big change,” she said. “But I trust Teri with my life and Todd likes her too.”
Leverenz led a Cal sweep of the 200 individual medley, winning in 2:11.87. Franklin and Pelton followed her.
Hardy won the 100 breast in 1:06.86, Canadian Audrey Lacroix won the 200 fly in 2:08.64 and 17-year-old Gillian Ryan took the 800 free in 8:36.49.
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