Duncan Scott is a versatile Scottish and Great Britain swimmer competing in freestyle, medley and butterfly events. From his breakout season in 2013 racing at his first junior international meet, Scott quickly rose to one of British Swimming’s most exciting talents. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Scott was the first British swimmer to reach the 100 meter freestyle final in 48 years, where he finished 5th. He also won two silvers in Rio in the 4×200 meter freestyle relay and the 4×100 meter medley relay.
Scott swims for University of Stirling under head coach Steven Tigg. Before Stirling, he attended boarding school at Strathallan School on a sports scholarship where he lived, swam and went to school.
2013- Breakout Year
At 16 years old, Scott won eight gold medals at the Scottish Age Group Nationals. He went on to make his international debut at the European Youth Olympic Festival where he pulled in a quartet of medals. He won gold in the 200 meter medley, silver in the 400 meter medley and 4×100 meter mixed freestyle relay and a bronze in the 4×100 meter freestyle relay.
2014- A busy Summer of International Swimming
He continued his international success at the 2014 European Junior Championships. He equaled the British age group record in the 200 meter medley en route to winning gold. He also won a gold as a member of the 4×100 meter freestyle relay and added bronze in the 4×200 meter freestyle relay.
On his summer break from school, Scott stayed close to home for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games where he was a member of both freestyle relays for Scotland. On the 800 meter freestyle relay, he swam the third leg to help Scotland to the Silver medal.
He continued his summer of racing at the Youth Olympics where he won gold as a member of Great Britain’s 4×100 meter freestyle relay.
2015 European Games- Most decorated GB Swimmer
At the European Games (juniors) in Baku, Scott came home with a much heavier suitcase after winning six medals. He won both his individual events, 100 and 200 meter freestyle as well as the 4×100 meter freestyle relay. He added silvers in the 4×200 freestyle 4×100 mixed freestyle and 4×100 medley relays. Scott’s medal haul was the most of any GB swimmer on the team.
2015 FINA World Championships
Scott became a world champion for his heat swim in the 4×200 meter freestyle relay in Kazan. The youngest male on Team GB, Scott swam the anchor leg in 1:48.35 to help qualify Great Britain third into the final. Dan Wallace, Robbie Renwick, Calum Jarvis and James Guy combined in the final to take gold in 7:04.33. He also swam the anchor leg of the 4×100 meter freestyle relay, posting Great Britain’s fastest split. But the British quartet combined for 10th place and missed out on a finals swim.
October 3 was a busy and special night for Scott. After emerging as an exciting new British talent, he was up for awards at both the British Swimming and Commonwealth Games Awards. With both events taking place on the same night, Scott’s parents went to the Commonwealth Games Awards and accepted his Young Sportsperson of the Year trophy. At the same time, Scott was called upon the stage at the British Swimming Awards to accept the Emerging Athlete of the Year.
2016 Rio Olympics
In his Olympic debut, 19-year-old Scott came away with two silver medals and was the first British male swimmer to reach an Olympic 100 freestyle final since 1968. His first medal came in the 4×200 meter freestyle relay where he joined Steven Milne, Dan Wallace and James Guy as the top seeds in the final. Scott took over for the second leg, posting the third fastest split (1:45.05) of all swimmers behind USA’s Townley Haas and GB teammate, Guy. Great Britain sat in third going into the final leg, but Guy over took Japan to finish behind USA in 7:03.13 to take silver.
The next night, Scott had a stunning swim in the 100 meter freestyle final to equal his British record that he set in the Semi-final. At the turn he sat in 8th, but had a blistering last 50 meters to finish 5th in 48.01. He was just 0.16 away from the bronze medal. Just making the final was a big breakthrough for British Swimming sprinting.
In the final race of the Olympic swimming schedule, Scott joined Chris Walker-Hebborn, Adam Peaty and James Guy to take silver in the 4×100 meter medley relay. The young GB team finished in 3:29.24 behind Team USA, lowering the British record record again from the mark they set in the heats. With Scott aged 19, Guy 20 and Peaty 21 there is still a long future ahead for this Great Britain medley relay team.
2017 FINA World Championships
On day two of the World Championships Scott roared to a 1:45.16 in the 200 meter freestyle semi-final to qualify first for the final. He was just 0.02 off James Guy’s national record. Guy finished 0.02 slower that Scott in his semi-final to put the two brits seeded 1-2 going into the final. In the final he finished just off the podium in fourth in 1:45.27.
In the 100 meter freestyle, Scott finished fifth in 48.11.
On day six, Scott became a World Champion again in the 800 meter freestyle relay. This year he swam in the final posting a 1:44.60, the third fastest split in the whole field. He swam the third leg and handed over to James Guy in third position. Guy had an incredible final leg, splitting 1:43.80 to touch home first for Great Britain.
On the final night Scott added a silver medal to his growing collection in the 4×100 meter medley relay. He split 47.04 to hold off Russia and touch behind USA in 3:28.95.
2018 Commonwealth Games
Scott once again had a busy schedule in Gold Coast, swimming 4 individuals plus 3 relays for Scotland. He medaled in all of his individuals, including gold in the 100 free (48.02), bronze in the 200 free (1:46.30), bronze in the 200 fly (1:56.60), and silver in the 200 IM (1:57.86). He also helped Scotland to 2 relay bronzes in the 4×100 and 4×200 free relays, and a 4th place finish in the 4×100 medley relay.
2018 European Championships
Scott took a slightly leaner meet schedule than comm games for Euro’s, dropping the 200 fly and focusing on 3 individuals plus relays. In the 200 free, he touched first with a time of 1:45.34, and followed that up with a silver in the 100 free (48.23). In the 200 IM, even though he was 3rd seed out of prelims, the top 2 seeds were his British countrymen, and therefore Scott was eliminated from competing in the semis. In the relays, he helped Britain to gold in both the 4×200 free and 4×100 medley (freestyle leg) relays.
2019 FINA World Championships
Duncan Scott’s first event was the 4×100 free relay, where he led off in 47.97, a British record, to help Britain earn 5th place.
Scott once again started his individual championships off in the 200 free, where he earned his first individual world medal as he tied for bronze with Russian Martin Malyutin in a time of 1:45.63.
Scott followed the model set by Australian Mack Horton earlier in the 2019 World Champs, protesting Sun Yang on the podium of the men’s 200 free. Sun (1:44.93) was awarded gold after initial winner Danas Rapsys was shockingly DQ’d after the race for movement on the blocks. Japan’s Katsuhiro Matsumoto took silver in 1:45.22, and Scott and Martin Malyutin of Russia ended up tying for the bronze in 1:45.63. Unlike Horton, the 22-year-old Scott did get on the podium for the playing of the Chinese anthem. But Scott refused to shake Sun’s hand and partake in a group picture with all the medalists after the podium ceremony.
Scott was back in the 4×200 free relay, where Britain tried to 3-peat their world titles. However, in what was an extremely close team race, Britain ended up finishing in 5th, just .03 behind 4th and .06 behind 3rd. Scott, however, broke a national record, leading off in 1:44.91.
Scott finished his program in the 4×100 medley relay, anchoring in a blistering time of 46.14 (2nd fastest relay split in history) to run down USA’s Nathan Adrian and touch for gold.