Blueseventy Swim of the Week: Sjostrom Strikes Back In Eindhoven

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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.

Sarah Sjostrom has already been tearing it up on the World Cup series, but this week, she very clearly went out of her way to earn SwimSwam’s prestigious Swim of the Week award.

Sjostrom had already broken two world records at the first tour stop in Moscow… but that meet came right after World Champs, and we ranked down the long course world records for that week’s featured swim. Then the following weekend in Berlin, Ranomi Kromowidjojo broke the 50 free world record and Sjostrom put up the 2nd-fastest swim all-time, and those took precedence over Sjostrom’s older records.

But this weekend in Eindhoven, Sjostrom would not be denied the title, which was undoubtedly more important to her than the $10,000 world record bonus, a 90-point World Cup points lead or a $50,000 cluster points bonus. Sjostrom smashed two more world records, this time coming up in the 100 free (50.58) and 200 free (1:50.43).

That 200 free, interestingly enough, retroactively boosts Sjostrom’s case in the World Championship rivalry with Katie Ledecky. Sjostrom won three individual golds in Budapest; Ledecky won five total golds, but only three of them individual. But Ledecky lost the 200 free, a race in which she beat Sjostrom at the 2016 Olympics, but that Sjostrom did not enter in 2017. But in Eindhoven, Sjostrom beat Federica Pellegriniwho was the one to beat Ledecky in Budapest. So by beating the one who beat Ledecky, does Sjostrom create the argument that she, too, could have beaten Ledecky in the 200 in Budapest?

Of course, there’s the short course to long course transition that makes the whole argument a moot point. But the one thing that is certain is that Sjostrom’s big weekend gives her unquestioned possession of SwimSwam’s blueseventy Featured Swim of the Week for the week. Not even $50K can buy that status.

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15 Comments on "Blueseventy Swim of the Week: Sjostrom Strikes Back In Eindhoven"

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Sjöström won 3 individual golds in Budapest. She did not win the 100 free due to… eagerness and stupidity. World record yes, gold… no.

SchoolingFTW

I won’t mention the ridiculous first 50 free because she can swim it and still have something in the tank, but her amateurish finish DID cost her the gold.

Ledecky won three individual golds in Budapest, the same number as Sjostrom. Ledecky won all three of those races (400, 800, 1500 Free) in times faster than anyone other than herself had ever swum, and btw it was the third straight World Champs in which Ledecky won those three individual events. It was a three-time three-peat, and a four-peat in two events if you count the Olympics. Has any female swimmer ever done that before? And this was coming off breaking American records nine times and NCAA records twelve times during the NCAA season. Ledecky also swam the fastest time in the world this year in the 200 Free LCM. The fact that Sjostrom chose not to swim against Ledecky… Read more »
ERVINFORTHEWIN

Great stats .

I believe Ledecky could have beaten Adlington for bronze in the 400 free in 2012. She didn’t get the chance because of the two swimmer limit per country. In 2005 Libby Trickett of Australia led off the 4×200 free relay with a time that was 1.54s faster than the gold medal winning time–but she had not qualified for the individual 200. What ifs seem reasonable in these cases, but I would prefer to accept results without any what ifs if a swimmer freely chooses not to swim in an event. Where it is reasonable to make other types of what if arguments would be in response to the what if arguments of others. Thus if someone says Ledecky would not… Read more »
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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career of almost two decades wasn’t enough for this Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for SwimSwam.com, covering swimming at every level. He’s an …

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