At the 2022 World Swimming Championships, two American swimmers, Hunter Armstrong and Claire Curzan, won the 100m backstroke golds. This was the first time the United States had swept the golds in this event since 2013. Armstrong, who is 6-foot-8, earned his third world medal in the event after winning bronzes in the previous years. He overtook Spain’s Hugo Gonzalez by just two hundredths of a second. Curzan, only 19 years old, earned her first individual world title by clocking a personal best time of 58.29 seconds in Doha.
The championships were notable for missing world record holders Thomas Ceccon of Italy and Kaylee McKeown of Australia as well as top U.S. backstrokers Ryan Murphy and Regan Smith from last year’s competition. However, both Armstrong and Curzan have shown strong performances at this year’s Worlds. The United States swimmers are currently preparing for June’s Olympic Trials where they will compete for spots on the Paris team with the top two in each event qualifying automatically.
During the last Olympic cycle, Armstrong made significant progress in his swimming career and went from 19th to second place behind Ryan Murphy at nationals trials in 2019. Similarly, Claire Curzan also had a standout performance at nationals trials placing tenth at the Olympics and has been a standout performer at this year’s Worlds championships.