USC's Keller Silvers in 10-Kilometer Open Water Race at Pan Pacific Championships
Aug. 21, 2006
Open water swimming will be held at the Summer Olympics for the first time in 2008, and USC senior Kalyn Keller took a big step toward contending in the new Olympic event with a second-place finish in the women's 10-kilometer open water race at the 2006 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Victoria, British Columbia, on Monday.
The United States' Chloe Sutton, a 14-year-old from Virginia, won the race held on Victoria's Elk Lake in 2 hours, four minutes, 25 seconds. Keller was four seconds back in 2:04:29 to give the United States both the gold and silver in the event. Canada's Tanya Hunks took the bronze in 2:05:01. The race featured entrants from the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand and marked the first international competition for the U.S. open water national team since the event was added to the 2008 Olympic program in Beijing in October 2005.
Keller competed in the 2004 Olympics, finishing fourth in the 800-meter freestyle. With open water swimming a new Olympic event, the Phoenix native has been trying to balance both pool and open water competition. Keller swam her first complete 10-kilometer race without a break at the 2006 U.S. Open Water National Championships in June where she took second behind Sutton. She won a 10-kilometer race at Goleta Beach in Santa Barbara last month and then finished second later that same day in the women's 1,500-meter freestyle at the Janet Evans Invitational held at USC.
Keller will compete for the United States in the open water race at the 2007 World Championships in Melbourne, Australia, next March. She is the lone Olympian from 2004 on the U.S. Open Water national team.
Americans also swept gold and silver in Monday's men's 10-kilometer open water race at the Pan Pacific Championships with Chip Peterson defeating Fran Crippen.