The 27 Best Photos From The Olympic Trials

Jun 26, 2012; Omaha, NE, USA; Pyrotechnics light up the arena after the national anthem before the start of the finals and semifinals races in the 2012 U.S. Olympic swimming team trials at CenturyLink Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Ryerson-US PRESSWIRE

Spend the Fourth of July getting to know members of Team USA with some of the best photos from the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Track and Field, Swimming and Gymnastics.

Over the past week and a half, a large contingent of Team USA was determined as the U.S. Olympic Trials held in Track and Field, Swimming and Gymnastics. Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte, as expected, dominated in the pool in Omaha, both qualifying for four individual events each, and the country was formally introduced to Missy Franklin, the 17-year-old phenom from Colorado.

In Eugene, Ore., a dead heat in the women's 100 meters dominated headlines off the track for much of the week, but on the track, Ashton Eaton, Galen Rupp and Sanya Richards-Ross put the rest of the world on notice. Meanwhile, in San Jose, USA Gymnastics determined its 10 athletes for the London Games.

What follows is a collection of some of the best photos from the trials, and a good chance for your familiarize yourself with Team USA on July 4:


Ashton Eaton scored 9,039 points to set a new world record in the decathlon, breaking a mark set in 2001. The Men's decathlon is decided in London on Aug. 9. (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)


Certainly the most famous image of the trials, and one of the more memorable shots from track and field in recent memory. Jeneba Tarmoh and Allyson Felix finished in a "dead heat" in the 100 meters. With a trip to London on the line, a runoff was planned but Tarmoh withdrew, opting to give her spot on the Olympic team to Felix.


Ashton Eaton, competing in 100-meter hurdles competition of decathlon. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)


Reese Hoffa, the top qualifier in the shot put at 69-7 1/2 (21.22m). (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)


The exact moment Ashton Eaton realized he broke the world record in decathlon. Perfect. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)


Marquise Goodwin of Texas won the men's long jump at 27-4 (8.33m). He can also do this as a Longhorn WR. (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)


This is how the women's 400m in the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials started for Sanya Richards-Ross. It ended with her winning the race. (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)


Justin Gatlin was walking on air immediately after winning the 100-meters, narrowly edging Tyson Gay, 9.80 to 9.86 seconds. (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)


Jamie Nieto, winner of men's high jump. Is it just me, or does it kind of seem like he's staring at the camera and in this exact moment thinking, "Sup."? (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)


Michael Phelps in a 200m butterfly semifinal, an event he won, or, alternate caption: "Wingspan." (Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE)


Pole vaulting is so weird. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)


Galen Rupp edges out Bernard Lagat down the stretch in the men's 5000 meters. Rupp qualified in both the 5000 and 10,000, and is a legitimate medal threat in both events at London. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)


Underwater swimming shots, like this one of Eric Friedland, Brendan Hansen and Elliott Keefer in a preliminary heat of the Men's 200m breast, make for some of the best sports photos. Hansen went on to finish fourth in the event, but won the 100m breast to qualify for London. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)


Did you know that jumping over barriers and into pools of water in an actual sport in the Olympics?! Crazy, right? Anyways, Emma Coburn did it better than anyone else and won the women's 3000m Steeplechase. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)


Ryan Lochte in a preliminary heat for the Men's 200m back. Lochte, a heavy medal favorite in London, won the event at the trials on his way to qualifying for four individual events. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)


Convinced they made this photo of Trevor Barron competing in the men's 20,000m race walk blurry on purpose to make it look less like he was just out walking around. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)


Cammile Adams is congratulated by Kathleen Hersey after winning the women's 200m fly. Either that or she just watched this Texas A&M video. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)


Chaunte Lowe winning the women's high jump. Just gonna go ahead and add this to the never-ending list of things I'll never be able to do. Scott Olmos-US PRESSWIRE


Jessica Hardy can't believe she just won the women's 100m free, beating Missy Franklin in the process. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images


David Payne, on his marks, and preparing to get set, before the men's 100m hurdles semifinal (he finished last). (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)


Olympians are able to make nearly impossible physical activities look very easy. Like U.S. Gymnastic team member Jacob Dalton, for example. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

147552324_extra_large_medium Gabrielle Douglas, women's all-around winner at the trials, competing on the beam. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


Michael Phelps was born to butterfly. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)


A multiple-exposure shot of Alicia Sacramone practicing on the beam before the start of competition. Sacramone finished 11th in all-around and was left off the U.S. Olympic team. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


Looking down on Sarah Finnegan as she jumps above the beam during the 2012 U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Team Trials. She finished sixth in the all-around and is the team's first alternate. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


John Orozco finished second in the men's all-around and earned an automatic spot on the US Gymnastic team going to the 2012 London Olympics. Then someone threw a bunch of tiny paper at him. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


Justin Gatlin, with his son, Jace, after winning the 100-meter dash in 9.80 seconds. (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)

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