USA Swimming has set the time standards for the 2023 Pro Swim Series that kicks off in January in Knoxville.
While several events have faster standards than they did this year, two stand out as being significantly quicker: the women’s 800 and 1500 meters freestyle. Last year, the long course 800 free standard was 9:06.69 and the long course 1500 standard was 17:25.59. This year, those times have dropped to 9:04.09 and 17:21.69. Ironically, the yards standard didn’t change in either event.
Those big drops in the women’s distance free standards mirror similar improvements in the Olympic Trials standards, which came out earlier this year. The women’s distance freestyles were among the worst-participated-in events in already thin Pro Swim Series fields last season. For example, at the March stop in Westmont, Illinois, there were only two entries in the women’s 1500 free and only four in the 800 free.
Other meets saw slightly better participation, but not by much. San Antonio had seven entries in the 1500 and 12 entries in the 800; and in Mission Viejo, there were nine entries in the 1500 and 11 entries in the 800 free.
Most of the other changes were of a smaller caliber, a few tenths per event.
These events saw changes to their long course standards.
W 800 free
W 1500 free
W 200 fly
W 400 IM
M 100 free
M 200 free
M 1500 free
M 200 back
M 200 breast
M 200 fly
M 200 IM
M 400 IM
Time standards must have been met in the last 24 months.
The one significant change in format is the addition of 50 meter stroke events, which don’t have qualifying standards but will be added to the Pro Swim Series in 2023. Athletes who have at least one TYR Pro Swim Series cut will be eligible to enter two 50s of stroke events (fly, back, breast). The rules don’t seem to allow an opportunity to enter all three, even for elite swimmers.
2023 Pro Swim Series Schedule:
January 11-14, Knoxville, Tennessee (University of Tennessee)
March 1-4, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida (Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Center at ISHOF, presumed)
April 12-15, Westmont, Illinois (FMC Aquatic Center)
May 17-20, Mission Viejo, California (Marguerite Aquatic Center)