Some of the biggest names in U.S. swimming have entered the 41st Toyota Santa Clara International Grand Prix, starting Thursday in Santa Clara.

Neptune athletes Maya DiRado, Molly Hannis, Kelsey Louden, Penelope Yamauchi, Sophia Yamauchi, Reid Hartz & Olympic gold medalists Natalie Coughlin, Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte headline the meet, the final West Coast stop in the Grand Prix series.

U.S. national teams members expected to compete include Olympians Kaitlin Sandeno, Erik Vendt, Kara Lynn Joyce, Amanda Beard, Jason Lezak, Peter Vanderkaay and Margaret Hoelzer, USA Swimming announced today. The field also includes Kim Vandenberg of Moraga and world record-holder Kate Ziegler.

A handful of other U.S. stars also are expected to enter the four-day meet at the George F. Haines International Swim Center as a preview to the U.S. Olympic trials, beginning June 29 in Omaha, Neb.

"For most of the people it will be last big meet to get into that mindset where they get ready for trials," meet director John Bitter said. "It’s the last chance to stand up and race more than one event. Kind of lay it on the line and see where they’re out."

Swimmers from Australia, Japan and South Africa who already made their Olympic teams also are expected to race.

 Interesting swimming article