Missy Franklin

Stars were stars this weekend during the Austin Grand Prix at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center. But no star had as big a weekend as Missy Franklin, who claimed four first-place finishes.

On Friday, Franklin got off on the right foot, winning the 100-meter free. But the night ultimately belonged to Nathan Adrian, who not only won the men’s 100-meter free, but also broke the pool record — which had been held since 1988 by Matt Biondi — by a tenth of a second.

On Saturday, Franklin owned the show, winning the 200-meter free and 200-meter backstroke. The 200-meter backstroke ended her night in a similar fashion to Adrian’s — with a pool record. Texas ex Ricky Berens also won an event, while Adrian won the splash-and-dash (nickname for the 50-meter free).

To round out the festivities Sunday, Ryan Lochte finally took gold. He swam away from his competition in his main event, the 200-meter medley. Franklin also capped off her grand prix, winning at least one event every day.

Texas-ex Karlee Bispo won twice, both times edging out Franklin in some of the tightest races of the evening. Current Longhorn Michael McBroom took first in the 1500-meter free, just like he did at Winter Nationals in November.

The next stop for the 2012-2013 Arena Grand Prix is Feb. 14-16 in Orlando, Fla.

For the second time in a two-month span, Olympic gold medalists Ryan Lochte and Missy Franklin will be swimming in Austin at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.

This time, though, it’s the Austin leg of the six-meet Arena Grand Prix Series which starts Friday and runs through Sunday. Other Olympians competing include Tyler Clary, Amanda Weir, Conor Dwyer, Chloe Sutton, Mark Gangloff and Kate Ziegler along with Longhorn Aquatics swimmers Ricky Berens, Garrett Weber-Gale and Jimmy Feigen.

Preliminary heats start at 9 a.m. each day, while finals begin at 6 p.m. Austin-based band Casino will perform Saturday from 4:30 to 6 p.m. to highlight the festivities.

The Arena Grand Prix Series gives the swimmers an opportunity to race against the best competition in the country to prepare for the 2013 Phillips 66 National Championships in Indianapolis, World University Games in Russia and the FINA World Championships in Spain.

If you have never been to a high-profile swimming competition, today is your day as past medalists and Olympic hopefuls pack the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center for the 2012 USA AT&T Winter National Championships.

That means many London Olympics stars such as Ryan Lochte, Missy Franklin, Nathan Adrian, Matt Grevers and Katie Ledecky will be competing alongside the best high school, NCAA and professional swimmers. Former Longhorns Ricky Berens, Jimmy Feigen and Garrett Weber-Gale, who are also Olympic medalists, will join them at the meet.

The midseason national championships, the biggest meet since the London Olympics, starts Thursday and runs through Saturday. Preliminaries each day start at 9 a.m. and the finals begin at 5 p.m. An all-session pass for the weekend’s events can be purchased at the door or online at the Longhorn Aquatics store. Texas students can purchase tickets at a reduced price.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to have nationals at our pool,” Carol Capitani, women’s swimming head coach, said. “It’s a great chance to really showcase our facility.”

The events Thursday include the 200 freestyle relay, 500 freestyle, 200 individual medley, 50 freestyle and 400 medley relay. Lochte, Franklin, Ledecky and many others will race Thursday.

Senior Dax Hill said he was excited to share the pool with Olympic medalists.

“No doubt, it’s a high atmosphere swim meet,” Hill said. “What you ultimately want is to get next to one of these guys in a race.”

Hill is one of a few Texas swimmers to keep an eye on this weekend. On the men’s side, Clay Youngquist, Michael McBroom, Kip Darmody and Hill have all won NCAA championships. Youngquist is ranked No. 1 in the NCAA for the 200 freestyle and No. 7 for the 500 freestyle, both of which will take place Thursday. On the women’s side, freshman Kaitlin Pawlowicz and all-American senior Laura Sogar — ranked in the Top 10 for the 100 and 200 breaststroke ­— have both been off to hot starts.

The championships can be watched by webcast at usaswimming.org or Sunday at 1 p.m. on NBC.

Printed on Thursday, November 29, 2012 as: Championship draws Olympians into Austin