2016 Rio Olympic Games: Day Three Finals Live Recap


Last night, the Americans got back on the top of the medal stand thanks to a gold from Katie Ledecky in the 400m freestyle and a gold for the American men’s 4x100m freestyle relay team. With four finals tonight, the Americans are in an incredible position to add several more gold medals to their resume.

Things are going to start out with the women’s 200m freestyle semifinals where Katie Ledecky has been absolutely dominant. She led this morning with a 1:55.01 and doesn’t seem to show any signs of slowing down.

After the semifinals of the women’s 200m freestyle, there will be four consecutive finals in a row which will be the highlight of tonight’s competition.

The first final will be the men’s 200m freestyle where China’s Sun Yang will be attempting redemption for his loss in the 400m freestyle earlier in the meet. You can bet Kosuke Hagino and Conor Dwyer are going to be in the mix trying to take down the Chinese superstar and earn individual gold.

Things just get stronger for the Americans here on out as they have the top qualifier in each of the next three finals. Kathleen Baker has been rocking solid 58.8s to lead both the prelims and semifinals of the 100m backstroke. She’ll have Emily Seebohm to contend with but is right in the ballpark for a medal.

The men’s 100m backstroke has been a staple event for the Americans. They haven’t lost this event since the 1992 Olympic Games where Mark Tewksbury of Canada took out Jeff Rouse and David Berkoff.

Twenty-four years later and both Ryan Murphy and David Plummer are leading the charge. They went in seeded one and two, but will have to race against 2015 world champion Mitch Larkin of Australia if they want to pull off a stunner.

The heated grudge-match between Lilly King and Yulia Efimova will take place last night. The famous finger-wag by King as she disapproved of Efimova’s throwing up a number one sign after her race went viral last night. Now, plenty is at stake. King is the top seed, Efimova is the second seed. World record holder Ruta Meilutyte is in the hunt as well.

Following the four finals, Michael Phelps, Chad le Clos, and Laszlo Cseh will all race in the semifinals of the men’s 200m butterfly. Phelps infamously lost this race in 2012 and is looking to get the gold back in his hands by setting himself up for a strong final tomorrow.

The last event of the night will be the women’s 200m IM where we’re on world record watch. Katinka Hosszu broke the Olympic record this morning and has been on fire all week.


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 1:55.01 – Katie Ledecky – USA
World Record: 1:52.98 (2009) – Frederica Pellegrini – Italy
JR World Record: 1:56.12 – Shen Duo – China
Olympic Record: 1:53.61 (2012) – Allison Schmitt – USA
2012 Olympic Champion: 1:53.61 – Allison Schmitt – USA

Katie Ledecky was beaten. No it wasn’t an international final, so her streak of never losing an individual event at an international final is still alive, but tomorrow night it might be in jeopardy.

In a head-to-head match up with Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom, Ledecky finished second with a time of 1:54.81 to Sjostrom’s 1:54.65. Ledecky was ahead at the 100, but lost the race on the last 50 where Sjostrom edged out in front of her and Ledecky was unable to close the gap.

World record holder Frederica Pellegrini of Italy was third behind the two leaders with a time of 1:55.42, the only other swimmer to dip under 1:56 this evening.

Shen Duo of China put up a very strong 1:56.03 to take the fourth overall seed shead of Michelle Coleman of Sweden. Coleman was a 1:56.05 swimming in the same semifinal as Sjostrom and Ledecky.

American Missy Franklin failed to advance to the finals after finishing eighth in the first semifinal. Other notable swimmers to miss the final were Veronika Poova and Femke Heemskerk


  1. Sarah Sjostrom – Sweden – 1:54.65
  2. Katie Ledecky – USA – 1:54.81
  3. Frederica Pellegrini – Italy – 1:55.42
  4. Shen Duo – China – 1:56.03
  5. Michelle Coleman – Sweden – 1:56.05
  6. Emma McKeon – Australia – 1:56.29
  7. Charlotte Bonnet – France – 1:56.38
  8. Bronte Barratt – Australia – 1:56.63


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 1:44.63 – Sun Yang – China
World Record: 1:42.00 (2009) – Paul Biedermann – Germany
JR World Record: 1:47.10 – Maxime Rooney – USA
Olympic Record: 1:42.96 (2008) – Michael Phelps – USA
2012 Olympic Champion: 1:43.14 – Yannick Agnel – France

Chad le Clos took things out hard in the final of the men’s 200m freestyle, taking it out as fast as he could and just trying to hold on. At the 100-meter mark he was in first, splitting an incredible 50.36 at the halfway point.

Heading into the 150-wall both Sun Yang of China and Conor Dwyer of the United States began to creep up on him from the middle lanes, pushing the pace as le Clos tried to hold on.

With 50-meters to go it was all between Yang, Dwyer, and le Clos as the three inched out ahead of the rest of the field.

Yang managed to edge out in front of the early leader and didn’t let Dwyer pass him, ultimately winning his first Olympic gold of the meet with a 1:44.65. Le Clos’ strategy paid off for him in the end, handing him the silver medal with a 1:45.20 performance.

American Dwyer was third in 1:45.23. Defending world champion James Guy of Great Britain finished fourth in a time of 1:45.49, just shy of a podium finish.

  1. Sun Yang – China – 1:44.65
  2. Chad le Clos – South Africa – 1:45.20
  3. Conor Dwyer – USA – 1:45.23
  4. James Guy – Great Britain – 1:45.49
  5. Townley Haas – USA – 1:45.58
  6. Paul Biedermann – Germany – 1:45.84
  7. Kosuke Hagino – Japan – 1:45.90
  8. Aleksandr Krasnykh – Russia – 1:45.91


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 58.84 – Kathleen Baker – USA
World Record: 58.12 (2009) – Gemma Spofforth – Britain
JR World Record: 59.37 – Minna Atherton – Australia
Olympic Record: 58.23 (2012)- Emily Seebohm – Australia
2012 Olympic Champion: 58.33 – Missy FranklinUSA

To anybody watching the race it appeared as though Australia’s Emily Seebohm had the race in the bag at the 50-meter mark, turning in first 0.48 seconds under world record pace.

Coming off that 50-wall the United States’ Kathleen Baker had an incredible turn in order to jet her into the lead. Keeping up with Baker was Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu, who was just slightly behind her but consistently inching up.

While the battle for gold was on between Hosszu and Baker, things heated up for bronze throughout the rest of the pool. Canada’s Kylie Masse and China’s Fu Yuanhui both managed to pass Seebohm and put on a fight for a medal.

With 10-meters to go, Hosszu passed Baker in order to get her hand on the wall first and earn her second gold of the games with a 58.45. Baker held on for the silver, clocking in at 58.75.

Touching in for bronze just one one-hundredth behind Baker was Masse and Yuanhui. Masse broke the Canadian national record en route to a shared bronze medal.

Defending world champion Emily Seebohm faded to seventh, finishing with a time of 59.19.

  1. Katinka Hosszu – Hungary – 58.45
  2. Kathleen Baker – USA- 58.75
  3. 3 Kylie Masse – Canada – 58.76 TIE FOR BRONZE
  4. 3 Fu Yuanhui – China – 58.76 TIE FOR BRONZE
  5. Mie Nielsen – Denmark – 58.80
  6. Olivia Smoliga – USA – 58.85
  7. Emily Seebohm – Australia – 59.19
  8. Madison Wilson – Australia – 59.23


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 52.49 – Ryan Murphy – USA
World Record: 51.94 (2009) – Aaron Peirsol – USA
JR World Record: 53.65 – Kliment Kolesnikov – Russia
Olympic Record: 52.16 (2012) – Matt Grevers – USA
2012 Olympic Champion: 52.16  – Matt Grevers – USA

The streak of American dominance in the men’s 100m backstroke continued tonight, as an American man topped the podium for the sixth consecutive Olympics in a row dating all the way back to 1996.

Ryan Murphy put a scare on the world record, just missing it by three one-hundredths of a second in order to smash the Olympic record and claim his first Olympic gold.

Murphy rocked an incredible 51.97 to make him only the second man in the history of swimming besides Aaron Peirsol to break the 52-second barrier.

That time for Murphy was the fastest textile swim ever in this event and the second fastest performance all time.

China’s Xu Jiayu managed to clock in a very impressive 52.31 to take down David Plummer of the United States and spoil the 1-2 finish for the American men. Xu’s silver medal makes it the first time since the 2004 Olympics that the Americans wouldn’t finish 1-2 in the 100 back.

Plummer did manage to finish third in 52.40. Defending world champion Mitch Larkin of Australia was fourth in 52.43.

  1. Ryan Murphy – USA – 51.97 (OR)
  2. Xu Jiayu – China – 52.31
  3. David Plummer – USA – 52.40
  4. Mitchell Larkin – Australia – 52.43
  5. Camille Lacourt – France – 52.70
  6. Evgeny Rylov – Russia – 52.74
  7. Ryosuke Irie – Japan – 53.42
  8. Robert Glinta– 53.50


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 1:05.70 – Lilly King – USA
World Record: 1:04.35 – Ruta Meilutyte – Lithuania
JR World Record: 1:05.39 – Ruta Meilutyte – Lithuania
Olympic Record: 1:05.17 (2008) – Leisel Jones – Australia
2012 Olympic Champion: 1:05.47 – Ruta Meilutyte – Lithuania

Lilly King of the United States made an absolute statement in the 100m breaststroke, backing up her talk about Yulia Efimova earlier in the heats by taking home the gold in a sub 1:05-performance.

King was out fast, and with 25-meters to go Efimova of Russia was charging. Stroke for stroke, with 15-meters to go King switched to another gear, refusing to let Efimova, who had recently failed two doping tests, take her down at the end.

With a huge surge and absolute resilience, King claimed the gold medal with a 1:04.93. Efimova managed to hold on for the silver medal in a time of 1:05.50.

American Katie Meili was passed by Efimova on the final 50, but still managed to get on the podium. Meili was a 1:05.69 finishing just 0.19 seconds shy of Efimova’s time.

Fourth was Shi Jinglin of China followed by Rachel Nicol of Canada in a 1:06.68.

  1. Lilly King – USA – 1:04.93 OR
  2. Yulia Efimova – Russia – 1:05.50
  3. Katie Meili – USA – 1:05.69
  4. Shi Jinglin – China – 1:06.37
  5. Rachel Nicol – Canada – 1:06.68
  6. Hrafnhildur Luthersdottir – Iceland- 1:07.18
  7. Ruta Meilutyte – Lithuania- 1:07.32
  8. Alia Atkinson – Jamaica – 1:08.10


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 1:54.73 – Tamas Kenderesi – Hungary
World Record: 1:51.51 (2009)- Michael Phelps – USA
JR World Record: 1:55.92 – Andrew Seliskar – USA
Olympic Record: 1:52.03 (2008) – Michael Phelps – USA
2012 Olympic Champion: 1:52.96 – Chad le Clos – South Africa

In their first head-to-head matchup since the Olympic final in London 2012 where Chad le Clos took down Michael Phelps, Phelps beat le Clos, although he didn’t win the semifinal.

Tamas Kenderesi, the 19-year-old from Hungary who took the top seed this morning in the 200m fly, was back at it again, claiming the win in the second semifinal with a solid 1:53.96 performance.

Phelps led the entire race and was only passed by Kenderesi in the last 25-meters of the swim. He still managed to finish second with a 1:54.12 which was good for second overall. Third in the final was le Clos who trailed Phelps the entire swim. Le Clos just came off a silver medal performance in the 200m freestyle but still managed a 1:55.19 for fourth overall.

Laszlo Cseh, also of Hungary, was third overall with his winning time of 1:55.18 from the first semifinal.

Originally thought to be a three man race between le Clos, Phelps and Cseh, Kenderesi is making a case that he’s in the mix for a medal as well.


  1. Tamas Kenderesi – Hungary – 1:53.96
  2. Michael Phelps – USA – 1:54.12
  3. Laszlo Cseh – Hungary – 1:55.18
  4. Chad le Clos – South Africa – 1:55.19
  5. Daiya Seto – Japan – 1:55.28
  6. Masato Sakai – Japan – 1:55.32
  7. Viktor Bromer – Denmark – 1:55.59
  8. Louis Croenen – Belgium- 1:56.03


Start List: click here
Top Seed: 2:07.45– Katinka Hosszu – Hungary
World Record: 2:06.12 (2015) – Katinka Hosszu – Hungary
JR World Record: 2:10.76 – Imai Runa – Japan
Olympic Record: 2:07.45 (2016) – Katinka Hosszu – Hungary
2012 Olympic Champion: 2:07.57 – Ye Shiwen – China

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor of Great Britain threw down an amazing swim in the first of the two semifinals tonight with a 1:07.57 to come within striking distance of the Olympic record that Katinka Hosszu swam this morning.

Maya DiRado of the United States finished second behind O’Connor to take third overall in 2:08.91. Faster than DiRado was Hosszu.

Hosszu was fresh off winning her second gold medal of these games with a 100m backstroke upset, and although she wasn’t entirely fresh she still won the second semifinal in 2:08.13. That gave her the second fastest overall time and puts her in contention to win a third gold tomorrow.

Defending Olympic champion Ye Shiwen of China was third in the first semifinal with a 2:09.33. She’ll be going into the championship final fifth overall.

Melanie Margalis was the second American to make the final with a time of 2:10.10.

TOP 8 

  1. Siobhan-Marie O’Connor – Great Britain – 2:07.57
  2. Katinka Hosszu – Hungary – 2:08.13
  3. Maya Dirado – USA – 2:08.91
  4. Ye Shiwen – China – 2:09.33
  5. Melanie Margalis – USA – 2:10.10
  6. Alicia Coutts – Australia – 2:10.35
  7. Sydney Pickrem – Canada – 2:10.57
  8. Viktoriia Andreeva – Russia – 2:10.87

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4 years ago

Crossing fingers for WR in 100 back!!

Reply to  Eggnog
4 years ago

As close as it gets but I am sure he will ecstatic with the GOLD because that is what matters in the big meet medals not records

Wild Bill
Reply to  Eggnog
4 years ago

So close!

4 years ago

Tonight it’s time for Yulia to quiet these children. Ruta already beat, the youngster King much to learn and school will be in session tonight!

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

You must be her doctor

Reply to  Swim
4 years ago

Her “pharmacist”

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

I don’t understand how one can be in favor of Yulia Efimova

Reply to  SZ2016
4 years ago

hes a professional troll, im sure

Tom from Chicago
Reply to  SZ2016
4 years ago

I’m glad the stadium boo’d Efimova. She can hang-out with Hardy and have clenbuterol and coke and medonium margaritas.

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

So Yuliya isn’t allowed to have fans? Lighten up.

Reply to  Santos
4 years ago

Cheaters aren’t supposed to have fans, fans of cheaters might as well be cheaters themselves.

Reply to  Hswimmer
4 years ago

If that’s not one of the most ignorant statements I’ve ever heard

Reply to  Hswimmer
4 years ago

Do you really think that all MP lovers here would suddenly hate him if he tested positive tomorrow? Of course not, most of them will build theories avoid facing the truth.

Reply to  Santos
4 years ago

She’s really talented and her technique is beautiful.

I really like her before all the scandals, now of course, is more difficult.

He Gets It Done Again
Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

Which class, PED 101? In today’s lesson, we will discuss how elite athletes, who have some of the healthiest hearts in the world, can take a medicine designed for people with the most unhealthy hearts and technically it’s not cheating!

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

Time for Julia to get out of the sport. Shes a two time doper and is a cheat.

Attila the Hunt
Reply to  Swimmom
4 years ago

Not only two time doper, she tested positive FIVE TIMES this year.

Mike M
Reply to  Attila the Hunt
4 years ago

FINA is (definitely) the new FIFA.

Cynthia mae Curran
Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

Watched out Yulia,

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

You were saying?

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

Boom, can’t even win doping!

Reply to  GOYULIA
4 years ago

Hey TASS-goyulia. How you like them apples!?

Years of Plain Suck
4 years ago

The SwimSwam “SILVER MEDAL JIMMY” Poll (unofficial) For the past month, we’ve been calling one of our favorite swimmers, Jimmy Feigen, “Silver Medal Jimmy.” This moniker was in reference to his winning an Olympic silver medal (as a prelim swimmer on the men’s 2012 4×100 relay) and and also an individual World Championship silver medal (2013 in the 100 free). This nickname was also created to distinguish Jimmy from his video-production partner, “Gold Medal Mel.” Jimmy seemed to like the “Silver Medal Jimmy” name as evidenced by the fact that just a week ago he dyed his hair “silver” (his fans went crazy over this). But something big happened to “Silver Medal Jimmy” yesterday: he earned a gold medal as… Read more »

About Mitch Bowmile

Mitch Bowmile

Mitch worked for 5-years with SwimSwam news as a web producer focusing on both Canadian and international content. He coached for Toronto Swim Club for four seasons as a senior coach focusing on the development of young swimmers. Mitch is an NCCP level 2 certified coach in Canada and an ASCA Level …

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