How embarrasing! Connor Jaeger was trying out for the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials on Sunday morning when he continued to swim even after the race ended and he had finished second in his heat.
Jaeger was competing in the 1500m freestyle which involves nearly 15 minutes of swimming when he apparently lost count of his back and forth laps and continued to swim even after the race had ended.
Instead of reaching out for a quick touch of the timing pad Connor flipped around and kept swimming.
According to Jaeger:
“I lost count and never heard the bell. I didn’t want to risk it so I just kept swimming.”
During the Grand Prix and collegiate meets officials dunk the lap counter sign under water to alert swimmers of the lap count, at Olympic trials however they can not dip the sign for fear of activating the timing pad.
Even if Jaeger didn’t see the sign he should have heard the lap bell.
Jaeger eventually same 50 meters before realizing that his race had ended and he had finished in second place.
“On the last 50 I was pretty sure I was supposed to stop,” he said. “I turned around and looked and the counter didn’t even have their counter up anymore. I saw Peter Vanderkaay on the wall and I was like, ‘Yeah, I’m supposed to stop.’”
At 14:59.97 Jaeger was the second fastest of the morning and he’ll get a chance at an Olympic spot on Monday night when qualifying finals are held.