In her last shot at trials, Simone Manuel qualifies for 50 free, headed to Tokyo Olympics

OMAHA, Neb. — Three days after revealing that she was suffering from overtraining, anxiety and depression throughout the spring, Simone Manuel qualified for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics by winning the women’s 50 freestyle Sunday night at the U.S. swimming trials.

Manuel, 24, won the event in 24.29 seconds, just 1/100th of a second ahead of Abbey Weitzeil, the winner of the 100 freestyle earlier in the trials. 

“More than anything I’m relieved just to be back on the team,” Manuel said, “and having another opportunity to swim for Team USA is just a blessing.”

Manuel, the American record holder and reigning Olympic gold medalist in the 100 free and American record holder and reigning Olympic silver medalist in the 50 free, spoke Thursday night about the struggles that caused her to miss three weeks of training two months before the Olympic trials. She chose to reveal that she had been diagnosed with overtraining syndrome after failing to qualify for the 100 free final.

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