Competition Circuit Grand Finale for Senior National Team Happens Tomorrow
by Alyssa Jacobs, USA Artistic Swimming
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -It all comes down to tomorrow. After the first day of competition for the FINA Artistic Swimming Olympic Qualification Tournament, a small margin separates the three teams likely battling for a spot in Tokyo. Greece, France and USA enter the final stretch of competition separated by about a half a point.
Our USA representatives looked exquisite in their tech routine performance, captivating the audience with their range of emotions and technical growth in the last year. The team outscored their previous tech score from the 2020 French Open by a large margin of 3.4625. For reference, France, who edged the team this morning, improved their score from the French Open by just .7227. This marks huge improvement for the United States squad and makes the competition especially interesting as the best is yet to come from our athletes. Narrowing the gap so dramatically in tech provides a huge opportunity tomorrow, as the revolutionary free program has undoubtedly transformed into a more difficult, more impactful and more impressive routine.
Buckle up, because tomorrow will be a wild ride. The last time USA performed the Robot routine in-person was also at the 2020 French Open. Here, they unofficially outscored France’s free program by .5666, by securing a momentous 89.2333, but due to a roster error were unable to officially claim the silver medal. While France will be performing new choreography, the ceiling is high for this free program, as the coaches have dialed up the difficulty and the athletes have far surpassed their previous execution capabilities. Greece’s last outing was way back at the 2019 World Championships where they scored an 88.3333. To bolster confidence even more, the senior national team performed their Robot routine at the recent U.S. Collegiate Championship to simulate an in-person competition environment and receive scores from highly trained judges. With their performance at Stanford University, that will most closely resemble the routine fans are likely to see tomorrow, judges awarded them a 89.8000.
Quantifiable numbers make or break our sport. But what’s also important to note is the intense energy surrounding this squad. The artistic swimming community truly believes in this team, their potential and their potential to succeed. Most importantly, they believe in themselves. The comeback story has inspired sports fans across the country, and we look forward to seeing them leave it all in the pool at 6 a.m. PT tomorrow morning.
1. Italy (90.7917)
2. Spain (90.5506)
3. Greece (87.3990)
4. France (87.0501)
5. USA (86.8550)
6. South Korea (79.6109)
7. Hungary (75.8796)