Ex-Clovis West swimming star Justin Wright wins U.S. national championship

Former Clovis West High star Justin Wright shocked the swimming world last week when he won the 200-meter butterfly at the Phillips 66 National Championships in Irvine.

The victory earned Wright a spot on the U.S. roster for the Pan Pacific Championships in Tokyo Aug. 9-12, and thus eligible to make the U.S. roster for the 2019 World Championships, USA Swimming announced Monday.

Wright, who recently finished his career at the University of Arizona, was competing at nationals for the Arizona-based Ford team in Wednesday’s 200 fly, his only event. He rallied from fifth at the final wall to touch first by half a second ahead of Zach Harting with a time of 1 minute 54.63 seconds. Wright won his first national title and posted the fifth-fastest time in the world this year. The time is seventh-fastest in U.S. history.

“I feel more confident than ever with my training,” Wright told SwimSwam. “And I really did expect to have a great swim today.”

Wright was on four Central Section team champions for juggernaut Clovis West and contributed a lot to the Golden Eagles’ dominance with 10 individual section championships, including three as a senior.

This year, Wright capped his Arizona career by lowering the school 200 fly record for the fifth time in placing fifth at the NCAA Championships.