U.S. Open Water Lessons from Rio Olympics

Haley Anderson arrived in Rio as the reigning Olympic silver medalist in the 10k open water swim, and Jordan Wilimovsky was the reigning World Champion in the event, but no American finished on the podium in either of the marathon swim events.

Anderson and Wilimovsky each finished fifth in their respective 10k races, while Sean Ryan placed 13th in the men’s event. Still, USA Swimming National Team Open Water Program Director Bryce Elser won’t call what happened in Rio a setback.

Medal count has definitely always been in the back of our minds, but looking at overall team performance is crucial,” Elser said. “It’s tough to put medals behind an event where so many things can go wrong in a race.”

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