| Sunday, April 10, 2016Olympian Haley Anderson (Granite Bay, Calif./Trojan Swim Club) took second in the women’s 5-kilometer race after an exciting photo finish on Sunday at the USA Swimming Open Water National Championships at Miromar Lakes Beach & Golf Club.
In a photo-finish, Aurélie Muller of France out touched Anderson by .008 seconds. Muller finished in 1 hour, 1 minute and 48.307 seconds, while Anderson finished in 1:01:48.409. Poliana Okimoto of Brazil took third in 1:01:48.524.
“I’m really happy with how it played out,” said Anderson. “I was fifth going into the turn and I had a really good turn, so while they were fighting it out I took a little wider of a line to get some clear water going into the last stretch and that’s what I wanted to do.”
In the men’s race, it was Marc Antoine Olivier of France who took home the gold in 57:24.104 ahead of Tunisia’s Ous Mellouli, who took second in 57:24.246 and Ferry Weertman of the Netherlands, who placed third in 57:25.439. Chip Peterson (Pine Knoll Shores, N.C./North Carolina Aquatic Club) was the highest placed U.S. National Team member placing fifth overall in 57:32.199.
In an exciting women’s race, the lead was traded regularly by Muller, Okimoto and Italy’s Rachele Bruni while Anderson settled into the fifth position for first three laps. Anderson waited until the final 200-meters to make her move as she surged to the front to challenge Muller and Okimoto for first. At the finish, Muller proved victorious. There was only a .217 second difference between first and third place.
The 2016 Open Water National Championships are held in conjunction with the 2016 Open Water Festival, which features a series of clinics and races, including a National Age Group Invitational being hosted by Gulf Coast Swim Club.