2007 Janet Evans Invitational Starts Thursday

July 10, 2007

Seven U.S. Olympians - including the recently graduated three-time NCAA champion Larsen Jensen from USC - and two international Olympic medalists highlight a rich field set to compete at the Janet Evans Invitational, presented by Speedo, Thursday through Sunday (July 12-15) at the McDonald's Swim Stadium on the USC campus.

Among the group of U.S. Olympians are world record holders Natalie Coughlin (Vallejo, Calif.), Dana Vollmer (Granbury, Texas) and former Trojan NCAA title winner Klete Keller (Phoenix, Ariz.) as well as Olympic silver medalist Jensen (Bakersfield, Calif.), Carly Piper (Grosse Pointe, Mich.), Tara Kirk (Bremerton, Wash.) and Allison Wagner (Oakland, Calif.). In addition, South African Olympians Ryk Neethling and Roland Schoeman will compete.

The 2007 Toyota Grand Prix Series is a seven-stop schedule designed to help top U.S. swimmers prepare for major domestic and international competition. Major upcoming competition for U.S. swimmers includes the World University Games, August 9-14 in Bangkok, Thailand, and the 2007 ConocoPhillips USA Swimming National Championships in Indianapolis, Ind., July 31-Aug. 4.

Prelims will begin at 9 a.m. Friday-Sunday with finals starting at 5 p.m. On Thursday (July 12), timed finals in the distance events will be swum beginning at 5 p.m.

Tickets are $3 for prelim sessions and $5 for finals sessions.

Three of the four members of the world record-breaking women's 800m freestyle relay will compete in Los Angeles. Natalie Coughlin, Dana Vollmer and Lacey Nymeyer competed along with Katie Hoff in the world-beating event in Melbourne in the spring. Now the three will continue their Olympic training by competing in the 1984 Olympic pool this weekend in Los Angeles.

Coast-to-Coast for Keller: Fans on the left coast can see world record-holder Klete Keller competing back at his alma mater this weekend. Keller, who went to USC and most recently swam for Club Wolverine in Michigan, recently changed training grounds and returned to USC where he trains with second-year USC head coach Dave Salo.

Comeback Kid: 1996 Olympic silver-medalist Allison Wagner will compete as part of her comeback bid for the 2008 Olympic Games. The 29-year-old IM specialist (who will turn 30 on July 21) retired in 2000, but is currently working on a comeback.

Sprinters on Show: 2007 World Champion Ben Wildman-Tobriner will compete against South African swim stars Ryk Neethling and Roland Schoeman in the 50m freestyle. Wildman-Tobriner finished just behind Schoeman's course record at the FINA World Championships in March.

A Pool of History: USC's McDonald's Swim Center was host of the 1984 Olympic Games. It was there that the 'voice of Swimming,' and USA Swimming's chief fundraising and alumni officer Rowdy Gaines won three Olympic gold medals.

-- From USA Swimming

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