Jason Lezak


Jason Lezak

Infobox Swimmer
swimmername = Jason Lezak


imagesize =
caption = Standing (l to r):Lezak, Garrett Weber-Gale, Cullen Jones behind Michael Phelps at September 3, 2008 taping of season-opening September 8, 2008 "Oprah Winfrey Show".
fullname = Jason Edward Lezak
nicknames =
nationality = USA
strokes =
club =
collegeteam =
birthdate =birth date and age|mf=yes|1975|11|12
birthplace =Irvine, California, United States
deathdate =
deathplace =
height = height|m=1.93
weight =
medaltemplates =

Jason Edward Lezak (born November 12, 1975) is an American swimmer.

He formerly swam for Irvine Novaquatics. He graduated from Irvine High School in 1994, and then from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1999. He is a member of the Rose Bowl Aquatics swim club. The head coach, Jeff Julian, is a long-time childhood friend.

He is 193 cm (6 ft 4 in) tall and weighs 93 kg (205 pounds). Lezak is a specialist in the 50 and 100 m freestyle races. He also owns long-course world records in the 400m freestyle and medley relays, as well a former American record holder in the 100 Free. Lezak is one of the few elite swimmers not to have a personal coach. Despite this, Lezak enjoys team sports and fellow American Gary Hall Jr. has dubbed Lezak as a "professional relay swimmer" at the 2004 Olympic Trials before their matchup in the 100m freestyle. [ [http://www.nbcolympics.com/athletes/athlete=525/bio/] ] [ [http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-olylezak12-2008aug12,0,6313222.story] ] He is sponsored by Nike and Rose Bowl Aquatics.

Personal life

Lezak was born in Irvine, California. Lezak pronounced Leh-Zhock(short e), means lounge/lawn chair in Polish, indicating the Polish heritage on his father's side of family.Fact|date=September 2008 Jason currently lives in Irvine, California, his hometown.

Career

Lezak's first long-course international swimming gold medal was in 2000, when he was part of the 4×100 m medley relay in the Olympics in Sydney. He also won a silver medal in the 4×100 m freestyle relay. In short-course competitions he won five world championships, four relays plus a gold in the 100 m freestyle in 2004. Lezak has also won 7 US Championships, 3 times in the 50 m freestyle and 4 in the 100 m freestyle.

2004 Athens Summer Olympic Games

"seealso|Swimming at the 2004 Summer Olympics|2004 Summer Olympics"

He competed in several events at the 2004 Olympic Games, and was a member of the 4x100 metre medley relay team that set a new world record at the games. He also won a bronze medal in the 4×100 m freestyle relay and finished eighth in the 50 m freestyle single race.

2005

In 2005 he was World Champion in the 4×100 m medley and freestyle relays with US national team.

2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games

"seealso|Swimming at the 2008 Summer Olympics|2008 Summer Olympics"

At the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, Lezak was the oldest male on the U.S. swim team. He anchored the U.S. 4×100 meter freestyle relay team that won the gold medal and set a new world record. In the final 25 meters, Lezak overtook French team anchor Alain Bernard (the world record holder in the 100m freestyle going into the relay) to win gold despite Bernard having nearly a full body length's advantage when Lezak started his leg and half a body length with 25 meters from the end. Lezak split a 46.06, the fastest 100 meter freestyle split in history, by nearly six tenths of a second. Rowdy Gaines commented shortly after the race that "that might be the most incredible relay split I've ever seen in my entire life." The final time of the American team was 3:08:24, which was 3.99 seconds faster than the previous world record. France finished second at 3:08.32, eight hundredths of a second behind - the closest finish in the event's history. The victory came only days after Bernard had issued inflammatory statements, stating that his team would "smash" the United States team in the race. The win was crucial to Michael Phelps, as without it he would not have had a chance to better Mark Spitz's record-setting 7 golds at the 1972 Munich Olympics. 4 x 100 metre medley relay to give Team USA the title, which was also Phelps's record-setting eighth gold medal of the Beijing Games.

Personal bests

His personal bests (long-course) are:

*50 m freestyle: 21.98
*100 m freestyle: 47.58 (former American Record)
*100 m freestyle relay split 46.06 (fastest relay split ever, although FINA does not recognize world records for relay splits)

References

External links

*
* Videos & Results on [http://www.swimpassion.net/Athletes/jasonlezak.html SwimPassion.net]
* Jason Lezak at the [http://www.jewishsports.net/BioPages/JasonLezak.html International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame] (inducted 2006)


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