Aspen Speedos to swim in home waters |

Aspen Speedos to swim in home waters

Dale Strode
The Aspen Times

The Aspen Speedos are coming home.

The Aspen youth swim team will get a chance to make a splash in its home pool this weekend when the Speedos host the annual Aspen Invite at the Aspen Recreation Center (ARC).

“We’ll have 190 swimmers here. We’re excited to swim in our own meet,” said Speedos head coach Gordon Gerson. “Most of the Western Slope teams will be here. And there is a team from Broomfield coming over.”

The schedule calls for the 10-and-under swimmers to compete in the mornings, 9 a.m. start both days.

The 11-and-older swimmers will work in the afternoons.

“It should be a fun meet. There won’t be a lot of super-fast times because we’re swimming at 8,000 feet. But it’s fun for the kid to see how their times compare to last year,” Gerson said.

His swimmers are coming off the Grand Junction Invite, a huge meet held at the aquatic center at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction.

Boulder and Flat Irons, two of the premier swim clubs in Colorado, attended the meet along with a powerhouse team from the north Colorado Springs area.

Boulder dominated in incredible fashion, totaling 5,206 points to 2,752 for second-place Flat Irons.

After the Colorado Springs team (1,249), Team Sopris was fourth with 973 with the Aspen Speedos a close fifth at 959.

“The meet went really well. I’m proud of the kids effort,” Gerson said of the field that included teams from Utah and Wyoming.

“Props go to Max Bryant,” Gerson said of the top Aspen swimmer.

The 17-year-old completed in nine events, which meant nine preliminaries and nine finals.

Bryant won four events, was second in two events and third in the other three.

“They didn’t keep high-point (numbers), but I didn’t see anyone else with those finishes,” Gerson said.

Bryant won the 200 individual medley, the 400 IM, the 100 butterfly and the 200 butterfly.

“He won each of those in dominating fashion,” the longtime Aspen Speedos coach said.

“Max has a lot of endurance in the middle distance events. And he’s become an outstanding butterfly simmer,” Gerson said. “The 400 IM, his best event, was his 18th swim of the weekend. He still won by 19 seconds.”

The Aspen coach said Bryant, as an experienced swimmer, knows how to pace the individual strokes in the individual medley.

“Really, it was a great meet for Max. He’s in a great place at this time of the season.”

Davy Brown, 12, “had a real nice meet. She had a lot of top-five and top-six finishes,” Gerson said, adding that she qualified for the finals in seven of her nine events.

Kelli Callahan, including relays, had 21 swims over the weekend.

“She came in top seven in all but three of her events,” Gerson said. Her best against the huge interstate field was a fourth in the 100 breast.

He said the senior girls division was overwhelmed by the depth and speed of the Boulder squad, which included several swimmers who had competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials as well as the U.S. Open Water Nationals.

Kelcie Gerson swam her way into the championship finals in two different events in the senior division. She was third in the 200 back and fifth in the 100 back.

Charlie Mechling, who only competed one day, had a pair of seconds and a fifth place.

The Aspen relay team of Gerson, Mechling, Kelli Callahan and Claire Collier, collected two third-place finishes.

“Everett Olson stepped up and swam the mile. He took second for the 11-12 boys,” Gerson said. He also finished fourth in the 200 free.

“Cole Petersen made some nice strides in his technique last weekend,” Gerson said. Petersen had a fourth and two fifths.

He said Lillie Boggs an Gracie Brown both swam very will in the big meet. They are 8 and 7, respectively.


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