Gunn Swims in Rio Tomorrow Afternoon

RIO DE JANEIRO – Less than a month after receiving the call from Zimbabwe’s swimming federation, Kentucky senior Sean Gunn will swim on the largest stage in the world.  The Harare, Zimbabwe, native was selected to represent his nation in the 100-meter freestyle, an event in which he holds the national record in 50.91 seconds.

Gunn is one of just two Zimbabwean swimmers who are performing at the Olympics, along with five-time Olympian Kirsty Coventry. He will appear in lane 5 of heat 2 tomorrow afternoon with the second-fastest qualifying time in his heat.  The men’s 100m free is scheduled for a 12:02 p.m. ET start time.

The top 16 fastest times from the eight heats will advance to the semifinals, which will be held Tuesday evening. The final is scheduled for Wednesday evening. 

The Olympic Games are broadcast exclusively in the United States on the NBC Universal family of networks. Gunn's Tuesday heat will be streamed live on the NBC Olympic app.

The selection process for Zimbabwe is different than the United States, which appoints Olympic Team members out of the Olympic Trials.  Coventry automatically qualified in August 2015 with a swim in the 100m back, leaving any remaining spots left to the discretion of the Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA, International Swimming Federation). Gunn was selected out of a number of other competitors who specialized in a variety of strokes based on a higher number of FINA points, which he accrued by swimming in various international competitions such as the World Championships, All-Africa Games and South African Nationals. At the national championships, Gunn was the champion in all his events, further helping his chances at being selected.

For the latest on the Kentucky swimming and diving program, follow @UKSwimDive on Twitter, on Facebook at Facebook.com/UKSwimDive, and on the web at ukathletics.com.