Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte, two of the world's best male swimmers, will compete today for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team.
Swimming trials for the Olympic team began Monday morning in Omaha, Nebraska. The preliminaries began at 11 am and will play at 6:30 pm tonight on NBC before the final rounds begin.
Both Phelps and Lochte were seeded for the 400 Individual Medley, an event that requires the swimmers to swim each of the four strokes. Phelps completed the event first today, taking first place in his heat with the time of 4:14.72. While the time is low enough for the gold medalist to earn a spot on the Olympic team (he is currently in first), it is nowhere near where Phelps was when he broke the record for the 400 I.M. in the 2008 Beijing Olympics with the time of 4:03.84.
Phelps, who was wary of perusing another Olympics, has stated that the London Olympics will for sure be his last. Phelps nearly lost the race to Lochte in 2008 and had to beat his own record in order to come out on top. This time however, Lochte may be in better shape considering Phelps' early setbacks after hesitating to train for the London Olympics. Lochte on the other hand, seems to be bubbling with enthusiasm.
"I would swim every event possible. That's what I love to do. I love just getting up on the blocks and racing the people next to you, trying to put your hand on the wall first," Lochte said during the press conference. "It doesn't matter what event, what stroke, I just love to race. I honestly don't know. If I could swim them, I would swim all 11, but I don't think my coach would allow that."
At current Lochte is ranked number one in all four events that he plans to swim.