2022 COMMONWEALTH GAMES
- Friday, July 29 – Wednesday, August 3, 2022
- Birmingham, England
- Sandwell Aquatic Center
- Start Times
- Prelims: 10:30 am local / 5:30 am ET
- Finals: 7:00 pm local / 2:00 pm ET
- LCM (50m)
- Meet Central
- Event Schedule
- Entry List (PDF)
- Live Results
The Australian quartet of Madi Wilson, Kiah Melverton, Mollie O’Callaghan, and Ariarne Titmus ran away with the gold medal in the women’s 4×200 free relay, rocketing to a new world record of 7:39.29. They finished 12.69 seconds ahead of the Canadians, who won the silver medal.
They’re the first team to crack the 7:40 barrier, and break the record of 7:40.33 that China set at the Tokyo Games by over a second.
Summer McIntosh led the way at the first exchange, leading off in 1:55.24 to put the Canadians ahead. Australia’s second swimmer, Melverton, caught the Canadians and had moved the Australians about a second and a half ahead by the end of her leg. O’Callaghan extended the lead, and Titmus anchored in 1:52.82, the fastest split of all-time.
Split Comparison – Australia at Commonwealth Games v. China at Tokyo Olympics
|Australia – 2022 Commonwealth Games||Split||China – 2020 Tokyo Olympics||Split|
|Madi Wilson||1:56.27||Yang Junxuan||1:54.37|
|Kiah Melverton||1:55.40||Tang Muhan||1:55.00|
|Mollie O’Callaghan||1:54.80||Zhang Yufei||1:55.66|
|Ariarne Titmus||1:52.82||Li Bingje||1:55.30|
The Australians were 1.44 seconds off the World Record pace when Titmus dove in. But by the 100, she had pulled back to only .38 seconds behind, and was right at the line at the final turn.
Her 1:52.82 split is the fastest ever by a considerable margin, and she’s the only one to have broken 1:53.
All-Time Top 5 Relay Splits, Women’s 4×200 Free Relay:
- Ariarne Titmus, Australia – 1:52.82 (2022)
- Federica Pellegrini, Italy – 1:53.45 (2009)
- Sarah Sjostsrom, Sweden – 1:53.64 (2014)
- Katie Ledecky, United States – 1:53.67 (2022)
- Katie Ledecky, United States – 1:53.74 (2016)
Titmus’s split is a crucial difference here for the Australian team. They tend to lead off with her as they did in Tokyo, where she split 1:54.51, well off the 1:53.50 she went to win gold in the individual event.
Another big difference is the addition of Mollie O’Callaghan. O’Callaghan led off the Tokyo prelims relay in 1:55.11, a world junior record, but the coaches made the decision to leave her off the finals relay. That decision cost them, as they could have used her as lead-off and had Titmus anchor, or given her a rolling start. They ended up with Olympic bronze, getting out-touched by the Americans.
The Australians have lots of depth in the 200 freestyle, and have had world record potential for a while, and they finally managed to put all the pieces together in Birmingham. Earlier in the meet, they swept the women’s 200 free podium, a harbinger of what was to come here.