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.
Over the last calendar year, Sweden’s Sarah Sjöstrom has slowly but surely extended her grip over history in the women’s 100 fly.
At this time last year, Sjöstrom did not yet hold the world record, and hadn’t been able to better her personal best of 56.06 in almost 6 years – ever since the banning of full-body supersuits.
But things changed in a hurry. Last June, Sjöstrom finally cracked that career-best, going 56.04. That swim opened the floodgates of 100 fly history.
After last weekend’s European Championships, Sjöstrom now owns 7 of the top 10 swims of all-time in the event, with 6 of those swims coming over the last calendar year. She holds 4 of 5 swims ever to crack 56 seconds, and sits three tenths of a second ahead of anyone in world history.
Top 10 Women’s 100 Butterfly Swims – All-time
- Sarah Sjöstrom (8/3/15) – 55.64
- Sarah Sjöstrom (3/30/16) – 55.68
- Sarah Sjöstrom (8/2/15) – 55.74
- Sarah Sjöstrom (5/20/16) – 55.89
- Dana Vollmer (7/28/12) – 55.98
- Sarah Sjöstrom (6/12/15) – 56.04
- Sarah Sjöstrom (7/27/09) – 56.06
- Zige Liu (10/18/09) – 56.07
- Sarah Sjöstrom (5/19/16) – 56.12
- Jessicah Schipper (7/26/09) – 56.23
The two swims highlighted come from semifinals and finals of the European Championships, the last major tune-up for Sjöstrom before the Rio Olympics.
As much success as she has had in her career, Sjöstrom is still without a single Olympic medal – but based on the way she has rewritten and obliterated 100 fly history over the past 12 months, she’s in perfect position to change that fact come August.
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Will be interesting how Sweden/Sarah choose the relay events at the Olympics. They seem to be one swimmer short in terms of breaking the top 3 in the 100/200 relays. They won’t have the ability not to swim her to make the finals as well. Is it worth compromising her individual swims in the 50/100/200 fr and 100 fly? Tough one, do you think she will do it all?
Read the first paragraph. That’s not about the best swim of the week.
Sjostrom’s a beast, we all knew that. I think the swim of the week shoulda gone to Paltrinieri for that 1500 swim. That was incredible and makes him the favorite for gold in Rio now. Also Laszlo Cseh’s 100 and 200 fly swims were worthy. His 200 fly was faster than Phelps last summer.
I don’t know if anyone’s told you, but there’s this guy named Sun Yang….
I don’t know if anyone’s told you, but Sun Yang has not swum under 14:40 since London Olympics.
I’m with you on this. As much as I’m a fan of what Sjostrom has accomplished, I was more impressed by Paltrinieri. I don’t think I have ever seen a world class swimmer with a stroke like his. And Cseh- this recent swim has really set up the 200 fly in Rio to be a race not to be missed.
It should really be 6 out of 7 fastest. The tech suits should not be counted.
Why though? They were fair game.