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Fact of the Day

Oct 22, 1998

What a way to start a swim meet! Three world records in the first three events!

Yes, the 1960's saw the greatest ever forward surge in world swimming. The events of July 7th, 1968 were a classsic case in point, when three sprightly 17-year-olds arrived at the Santa Clara International Swimming Center, each with but one thought in mind - to break a world swim record.

First came Pam Kruse, Fort Lauderdale Swim Club, Florida, to clip .8 second off the world 400 metres mark with a time of 4:36.4.

Next on the block was young Mark Spitz of Santa Clara who kept the ball rolling with a 4:08.8 for a new men's mark in the 400 free, .4 second under the time set only a few days earlier in Monte Carlo by France's Alain Mosconi.

In the third event of the meet, Claudia Kolb, also of Santa Clara, completed the spree by beating her own world 200 I.M. mark of 2:27.5 by .3 second.

"Those were the days, my friends, we thought they'd never end..."