Blueseventy Swim of the Week: Santos & Brazil Leading In Speed


Disclaimer: BlueSeventy Swim of the Week is not meant to be a conclusive selection of the best overall swim of the week, but rather one Featured Swim to be explored in deeper detail. The BlueSeventy Swim is an opportunity to take a closer look at the context of one of the many fast swims this week, perhaps a swim that slipped through the cracks as others grabbed the headlines, or a race we didn’t get to examine as closely in the flood of weekly meets.

Brazil’s Maria Lenk Trophy wasn’t the world’s deepest world champ trials meet, nor the strongest overall. But in a very specific sense, it may have been the fastest.

Brazilian swimmers absolutely crushed the 50-meter races, showing perhaps the best pure speed of any meet so far this year.

The highlight was Nicholas Santoswho scorched a textile-best 22.61 in the 50 fly, breaking a national record and coming within two tenths of the world record. That world mark was set in 2009 at the height of the super-suit era, which seemed to aid the sprint events more than any others. Spain’s Rafael Munoz was 22.43 that year, and Serbia’s Milorad Cavic 22.67. Santos has now split those two times to sit #2 all-time and earn the top swim ever done in textile.

But he wasn’t the only 50-meter swimmer to impress. He wasn’t even the only 50 flyer. Brazil saw its top three finishers jump to #1, #3 and #4 in the world ranks, with Henrique Martins and Cesar Cielo also checking in with big times.

Ultimately, Brazil’s Maria Lenk meet saw 9 different Brazilian swimmers crack the top 5 in the world ranks for this season in a 50-meter race. Brazil now has a swimmer in the top 5 in every single men’s event of 50 meters along with two of four women’s races.

Here’s a look at all of Brazil’s top-5 world ranked swims from Maria Lenk:

Men’s 50 Fly

Men’s 50 Free

Men’s 50 Back

Men’s 50 Breast

Women’s 50 Breast

Women’s 50 Back

Every one of these swims came in the past week, and that doesn’t even include a 6th-ranked 21.79 from Cesar Cielo in the 50 free. That is just .05 seconds out of the top 5 and a tenth out of 4th place.

This doesn’t necessarily mean Brazil will be topping the overall medal table at this summer’s World Championships in Budapest. But it does suggest that the nation is primed to use perhaps its greatest strength – pure, unbridled speed – to take advantage of the 50-meter events they didn’t have at last summer’s Olympic Games.



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I’d love a video of Santos’ 50 fly


Wow Brazil has 2 people under 23 in the 50 step it up America


Aparty maybe from Dressel (if he swims it) I don´t see any guy on US who could deliver a sub-23 50 fly.. Apart from Lundquist (With suits) no one went sub-23 from US


Are best chances are Andrew and Smith going off current proven times. I’m sure Caeleb can put down a wicked fast one though.

bobo gigi

USA will take care of 50s of stroke when they will be at olympic games.
And yes, I’m pretty sure a Dressel fully tapered can swim under 23 in the 50 fly. But honesly I prefer to see him much more focus on the 100 free in long course.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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