Stanford grad Dunford reaches finals of FINA World championships


Stanford grad Jason Dunford qualified for the finals of the men's 50 fly at the FINA World Championships in Shanghai, China.

Dunford, swimming for Kenya, placed fourth in the first qualifying round with a time of 23.48. He improved that to 23.34 in the semifinals, in which he also placed fourth.

Two American relay teams earned medals on the first day of competition. The women's 400 free relay earned the silver medal with a team of Natalie Coughlin, Missy Franklin, Jessica Hardy and Dana Vollmer. They finished with a time of 3:34.47.

The men's 400 free relay team of Michael Phelps, Garrett Weber-Gale, Jason Lezak and Nathan Adrian won the bronze medal with a time of 3:11.96.

Vollmer set an American record in the semifinals of the women's 100 fly, turning in a time of 56.47, improving on her own mark of two years ago by .047 seconds.

The U.S. women built a lead on the rest of the field through the first three legs of the free relay, but could not hold off the Dutch team, which finished first in 3:33.96. Germany was third in 3:36.05.

The men's free relay trailed eventual champion Australia from the first leg and could not shrink the gap. Australia finished in 3:11.00, followed by France in 3:11.14.

"It's tough not starting out the way we want to," Phelps said. "It stinks, but it's going to give us some of motivation for the rest of the meet."

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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