Aussie Olympian Cate Campbell Not Ruling Out Paris 2024

The nation of Australia produced its best-ever Olympic team performances in the pool at this year’s Games in Tokyo, Japan. The squad scored 9 gold medals which surpassed its count from its previous most successful Games of Melbourne in 1956.

Among the multi-medalists were Emma McKeon and Cate Campbell whose gold and bronze medal-worthy performances in the women’s 100m free represented the first time Australia had had two medallists in the women’s event since the aforementioned Melbourne Games.

For Campbell, the result in Tokyo marked 13 years between individual bronze medals, with her prior third-place finish having come in the 50m free at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing when she was just 16 years of age.

As such, these Tokyo Olympics represented the Simon Cusack-trained athlete’s 4th Games appearance and Campbell is not counting Paris 2024 out.

“To be honest, I haven’t made any plans,” now-29-year-old Campbell told media this week while in 2-week quarantine upon returning to Australia from Japan.

“I’m just going to sit back and enjoy this moment for what it is.”

However, C1 did say, “I don’t feel like I’m completely done with the pool or done with the sport.”

“There’s no point in saying this is definitely the time to walk away, but I definitely need a little bit of a different stimulus for a while.”

C1 also took a break after the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, where she didn’t compete for most of 2017, including opting out of that year’s World Championships.

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Troyy
1 year ago
Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

Has anyone ever been their country’s flag bearer in the opening ceremonies twice? That would be pretty cool.

Admin
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

It’s happened many times. Pat MacDonald did it in 1920 and 1924 for the US. Norman Armitage did it in 1952 and 1956 for the US. Mervyn Wood did it for Australia in 1952 and 1956. Mike Dixon did it for the UK in 1998 and 2002. Yao Ming for CHina in 2004 and 2008. Etc.

96Swim
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 year ago

Gotta think Ledecky gets that honor in Paris if she is on the team. With Allyson Felix retiring, that likely leaves someone from basketball or women’s soccer as the only other likely options, right?

Torchbearer
Reply to  96Swim
1 year ago

Ledecky- depending on swimming schedule….closing is usually a better bet for swimmers.

M d e
1 year ago

Can’t see her getting the individual again with Molly O coming along and Emma being younger.

But she could still be a valuable relay contributor for sure.

commonwombat
Reply to  M d e
1 year ago

One suspects that McKeon is likely to go on to Paris and that should lock up one of the 2 individual berths. Would agree that it will be a battle for C1 to hold onto the other spot unless both Harris and O’Callaghan stall in their progress. At this point, she may still have a route via the 2nd 50free spot.

Until/unless someone else comes forward as a reliable sub53 split, the 4th spot is hers if she wants it.

Verram
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

Don’t forget Shayna Jack .. she was swimming 53.2 before the drug issue came up .. she might contend for Paris 2024 relay teams at least

commonwombat
Reply to  Verram
1 year ago

Possibly but whether she can handle having that shadow always being held over her is open to question. Not too many have done so …. and I cannot find any AUS precedents for doing so. Most have chosen to retire and the only high level AUS case I can recall was Riley back in the mid 90s. She was let off for a headache tablet with her coach taking the dive ……. but she was never mentally the same afterwards.

Troyy
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

I don’t even think the analgesic Riley tested positive for is banned anymore.

commonwombat
Reply to  Troyy
1 year ago

Maybe the case but mentally she was a deer in the headlights thereafter. Still capable of high performance but any air of invincibility was shot.

Swimmer
Reply to  M d e
1 year ago

50 free is still possible I wouldn’t write C1 off of that

Sub13
Reply to  M d e
1 year ago

I might be too optimistic but Mollie is looking like a future force to be reckoned with.

50m free – She was 0.03 off the FINA A cut at trials with a 24.80, and only 0.4 off her short course PB. She hasn’t swum this event since, but given her improvement in other events I’m sure she could do better.

100m free – She swam 53.25 at trials and dropped that to 53.08 at the Olympics. She then split a 52.35 in the medley relay heats! She’s surely capable of a sub 52 regular start.

200m free – She swam a 1:56.29 at trials, dropping to a 1:55.11 at the Games. I believe that’s the 11th fastest time in the… Read more »

Robbos
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

She’s only just turned 17 in April, so I think she has the potential to see massive improvements in coming years. Maybe more a 200/100 swimmer, then a 100/200 swimmer. While Meg Harris is going to be 50/100 swimmer.
Only worry with Harris, she was on the 4X100 relay Gold & has already experienced that, while Mollie will be more hungry, maybe, maybe not.

Troyy
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

McKeon was a 200/100 swimmer and now look what she’s doing.

commonwombat
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

Will be interesting to see how both Harris and O’Callaghan track over the next couple of years and whether they continue to move forward or whether we see them plateau. Or whether we see uneven progression across their events. I can certainly see O’Callaghan making a push for the 2nd 100back spot given she is already sub59.

In both Harris and O’Callaghan’s cases, it should be to their benefit that they will not be made to wear the burden/attention of being the main AUS hope in any of these events …. at least until the next major level intl meet plays out.

Troyy
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

O’Callaghan will have the 200FR/100BK double to contend with if she continues on the same path.

There was only 20mins between the 100BK final and 200FR semi at Gwangju. Tokyo was even worse with the 200FR semi coming before the 100BK final.

commonwombat
1 year ago

I think the likes of Larkin & McEvoy will slink off quietly into retirement given their Tokyo outings. C2’s shoulders are “shot” so I would expect its curtains for her. Last hurrah for Morgan; will be interesting to see whether Horton, McLoughlin will continue or cash it in.

ISL and next year’s CG may well keep some, like C1 & maybe Seebohm, in until then. It’s then that we may see some make those calls. Some may, indeed, be made for them if we see their road to continued selection threatened, and indeed cut-off, by the generation now coming through.

Suspect this will especially be the case for Seebohm. C1 could still have the avenue of relays dependent on… Read more »

Verram
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

I do agree on McEvoy Morgan and Horton .. sorry to say but they have become passengers on the Aussie team … Horton has been “training” the entire season and never really peaked for any meet at all so not sure what’s happened to him … Elijah winnington also didn’t perform to expectations .. at least McLoughlin salvaged a silver in the 400m and nearly stole gold as well

Skip
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

Reckon most will hang on until after comm games

Robbos
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

I would like a Spanish inquisition on Cam McEvoy, how did he drop so quickly? Was it form, training, other interests?
Larkin & Horton, though not near their best, at least at trails or other meets this year, showed they weren’t far away.
McEvoy just never got close.

Last edited 1 year ago by Robbos
torchbearer
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

Agree- but he somehow managed to be picked for the individual 50m and 100m!

Verram
Reply to  torchbearer
1 year ago

His reputation precedes him.. meanwhile young ones like Mollie Sam and Lizzy have to beg and plead to get a swim at the Olympics especially Mollie in 4×200 finals

commonwombat
Reply to  torchbearer
1 year ago

Essentially both were via default. 50 due to there being no qualifier and he won Trials. 100 via Temple stepping aside thus passing it on to the next finisher.

commonwombat
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

Probably no one set thing but rather a number of interconnecting ones. He’s clearly a highly intelligent young man but academic intelligence does not necessarily equate to street smarts. Did he start to “overthink” things leading to a degree of ‘paralysis by analysis’ ? With Rio, being part of a team that was mostly misfiring probably added further pressure as was the cases with C1. In short, I suspect he came to doubt himself and has never quite been able to extricate himself from that hole.

Just my hypothesis ……. and I could be very very wrong.

Corn Pop
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

Why are he & Cate not given the Simone Biles accolades ? Tears of Joy , You failed but you are the best . It was YOUR Olympics!!!Everyone clap for the GOAT. Go Girl . You are us all .We are you !!

Choking is the new winning. So everyone get off Cam& Cate’s cloud . They were innovators !

Robbos
Reply to  commonwombat
1 year ago

Thanks, just haven’t heard anything about it.
That swim in 2016 Olympic trials 57.04 was mind boggling.

Joel
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

47.04 🙂

Robbos
Reply to  Joel
1 year ago

OOPS, thanks.

commonwombat
Reply to  Robbos
1 year ago

Regrettably, that proved to be a case of “that one perfect race” rather than something he could replicate or at least come near to again.

Torchbearer
1 year ago

Out of interest, do we have a list (or story) about who haas retired after Tokyo? I have seen very few retirements,and none confirmed from Australia, not even CCampell or Seebohm!

Meow
Reply to  Torchbearer
1 year ago

Pelligrini, I think? Or after the ISL season?

Old Man Chalmers
Reply to  Meow
1 year ago

pellegrini: I’m retiring. if I do make a comeback, I won’t be swimming the 200 free

Troyy
Reply to  Old Man Chalmers
1 year ago

She’s kind of like those shops that are always having a closing down sale but never close.

Admin
Reply to  Torchbearer
1 year ago

The list is very short so far, if we’re limiting it to just Olympians.

I think lots of swimmers have figured out that they can cash out a little longer by “not retiring,” even if they’re not really training the same as they were before. I think still more will retire after ISL. And I also think there is a contingent that sees an opportunity with just 3 years to Paris to maybe grind it out more than they would with a full quad.

commonwombat
Reply to  Braden Keith
1 year ago

Agree this upcoming ISL will be seen by some as a potential opportunity for some additional pre-retirement $$$. Some will make the call there and then, others will survey the situation both with regards to their wider lives as a whole and where they stand with regards to futures in the sport/future national selection.

Yup
Reply to  Torchbearer
1 year ago

MA’s freestyle leg

Swimmer
Reply to  Torchbearer
1 year ago

There may be some swimmers that stick around for isl then they might call quits. However I’m not sure about Seebohm cause she did say she hasn’t ruled out Paris in a post race interview

Awsi Dooger
1 year ago

1.02

Sub13
1 year ago

I adore Cate, but I’m honestly not sure if she would qualify individually for Paris. If Emma keeps her form up, then all it would take is one of the young guns (and we have quite a few young female freestylers who are rapidly improving) to step up.

Obviously I hope Cate does whatever makes her happy, but this Olympics being her fourth and most successful does make it seem like a beautiful end to her Olympic career.

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

I think Cate is fully aware of that and would be perfectly content being a relay only swimmer.

I hope to see her in Paris.

Sub13
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
1 year ago

Yes I suppose you’re right. Narratively it feel right for her to “go out on a high” but obviously she knows what’s best for her better than I do!

One area I hope she improves is her relay reaction time. I expect her to bring that 0.04 down to a flat 0.00.

Samesame
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

That made me laugh out loud

GTS
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

She should trademark .04. That was a veteran move. Brilliantly executed.

Old Man Chalmers
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

or play it even more dangerously and consistently hit -0.03

Swimmer
Reply to  Sub13
1 year ago

I think part of it as well is she wants to make a 5th olympics which no Australian swimmer has ever done before and to do that she just needs to finish top 6 in the 100 free which I think she should still be able to do

5wimmer
1 year ago

I feel like her swimming career is in a very good place and she is purely enjoying the sport. She’s a legend no matter what happens from here

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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