Cary swimmer Claire Curzan gets another shot in Tokyo Olympics, this time on relay team

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Swimmer Claire Curzan, the Cary teen who made her Olympic debut last weekend, will have chance to compete again in Tokyo, days after she was eliminated in her sole event.

She will swim the butterfly leg in the preliminary round of the 4x100 women’s medley relay, her father, Mark Curzan, said in a text message Thursday night.

Curzan, 17, is among the youngest U.S. Olympians in any sport. She’s a rising senior at Cardinal Gibbons High in Raleigh.

Saturday, Curzan missed qualifying for the final of the 100-meter butterfly by less than three-tenths of a second and, at the time, it appeared that her time as a competitor in Tokyo might be over.

Instead, her family learned Thursday that Curzan had been selected for the medley relay team in the prelims.

She had qualified for the Olympics in June when she finished second in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in the 100-meter butterfly, the event in which she has long set national age group records.

In Tokyo, she reached the semifinals in that race and finished in 10th place, with a time of 57.42 seconds.

But only the top eight swimmers advanced to the final, which Canadian Margaret MacNeil won with a time of 55.59.

The race will start at approximately 8 a.m. EST on Friday (which is 9 p.m. in Japan). The final is set for 10:15 p.m. on Friday (11:15 a.m. on Saturday in Japan).

Among American swimmers, Curzan owns the third-fastest time in history in the 100-meter butterfly. Her personal best in that event is 56.20, which she swam last November while winning the 100-meter fly at the U.S. Open in Greensboro.

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