Caeleb Dressel Recaps His Olympics And Why He Didn’t Swim The 4×200

Gold Medal Minute presented by SwimOutlet.comCaeleb Dressel owns seven Olympic gold medals now, picking up five from the recent 2020 Olympic Games. In this interview he unpacks a lot.

Olympic 100 meter freestyle? It started hurting him at the 60 meter mark. Please note that the 100 free will be his first “Dressel Dissects” on youtube as soon as he settles in Naples, Italy for ISL Season 3 and gets some free time.

ISL Season 3? Will he race more than fans think? Dressel intends to race as much as possible. Competing is his happy place, but he’s going to play it by ear and see how he’s doing managing his time and general good health.

The Olympic 100 meter butterfly start and finish? Dressel breaks down his mistakes, and he does think he’s got a 49.2 loaded with a sharper turn and finish. Kristof Milak surprised him. He did not expect a 49.6 from the 200 butterfly world record holder.

4×200 free relay? Dressel wanted to swim it. That’s why he swam the prelim 200 free at U.S. Trials. Watch the video to hear his complete answer.

Mixed Medley Relay? Dressel isn’t second guessing anyone. Looking back, however, he does think leading off with a male athlete in the 100 back and 100 breast might be the best way to race that relay.

50 free? Dressel didn’t have much to say. He won the pure sprint by a wide margin — an astounding .48 — a wider margin than his other four Olympic gold medal performances.

4×100 Medley? Dressel felt that was the best race and his best swim of the entire Olympic competition. Dropping a 49.03 split while exhausted on the final night of competition is something he’s proud of.

Congrats to Caeleb and Coach Gregg Troy on their 2020 Olympic Games performance.

Dressel b-roll race video is courtesy of ISL.  You can stream ISL Season 3 here.

Help Dressel improve his Instagram follower ranking. He’s ranked 5th among the most-followed swimmers on earth with 703,000 followers.  Follow Caeleb Dressel on Instagram here. 

Follow Gold Medal Mel on Instagram here

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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.

Opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the interviewed guests do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, and viewpoints of the hosts, SwimSwam Partners, LLC and/or SwimSwam advertising partners.

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David
3 months ago

He’s right.
His best swim by far was his medley relay split .
The 50 was excellent
The rest just meh

Togger
Reply to  David
3 months ago

Can’t count the number of times I’ve gone 47 low/49 mid and just felt deflated.

Gold Medal Mel
Reply to  Togger
3 months ago

😉🤓

Mr Piano
Reply to  David
3 months ago

Lmao WRs are meh

Philip Johnson
Reply to  David
3 months ago

His “meh” swims won gold medals.

M d e
Reply to  Philip Johnson
3 months ago

Everything is relative.

If I had ever went a 49 100 free I would have been stoked.

If he went 49 he’d be filthy

Last edited 3 months ago by M d e
PhillyMark
3 months ago

mixed medley
Smith 57.6
MA 58.4
Dressel 49.0
Abby 52.6

USA 3:37.60 (GB finished 3:37.58 and USA was 3 seconds slower at 3:40.58 in Finals).

Off note: I still think Fink at 58.5, and 2nd fastest American breaststroker ever, deserved a relay swim at some point during the OG’s.

Casas 100 back gold in Fukuoka
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

The math doesn’t work like this.
Smith was 58 in both the individual final and women’s MR. And you can’t just assume MA and Abbey would both replicate their fastest split at the whole Games. It was also Dressel’s third event in the session so it’s not guaranteed he would swim 49.0. He ‘only’ went 46.99 in the free split.

PhillyMark
Reply to  Casas 100 back gold in Fukuoka
3 months ago

i used Regan’s split from mixed medley prelims.

just trying to convey what would have been the fastest relay for USA.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

Abbey split that with a pretty bad takeover, too.

So it’s not impossible they all go those times – unlikely you’d get all four of them firing like that at the same time – but it’s definitely more likely than the relay they actually went with

jim
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

Correct – and while the relay is rather volatile betwen having men and women compete on the 1st 3 legs, that 4th leg would’ve been rather close with both teams having female swimmers to anchor…I’m pretty sure Weitzel is faster than any brit on a relay start 100 free…so, if only she was given the chance!

Thomas Selig
Reply to  jim
3 months ago

Erm Hopkin split 52.00 anchoring the mixed medley relay, which is faster than Weitzeil’s best by a bit, so not sure about that last part (she also finished higher than Weitzeil on the individual).

PhillyMark
Reply to  Casas 100 back gold in Fukuoka
3 months ago

plus, Abby went 52.4 in the 400 medley relay final. Dressel’s 46.9 was through many sets of waves and as Mel referenced was basically like an OW swim.

PhillyMark
Reply to  Casas 100 back gold in Fukuoka
3 months ago

If you want to go on hunches that’s fine….if you’d like to use objective data and use a team that has the highest probability of winning then that’s another thing altogether. The team they used had a best possible time much slower than many other projected lineups.
If Murph (51.8), Lydia (64.5), Huske (55.5) and Dressel (46.5) all went lifetime best splits they are still seven-tenths slower than Smith MA CD Abby. Obviously workload can contribute to drop-offs but elite athletes are often able to step-up.

Swim85
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

They would have to use a different swimmer than Abbey. She had 50 free semis 10 mins prior to Mixed MR

Joel
Reply to  Swim85
3 months ago

McKeon did both

Sub13
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

Yeah but McKeon’s done a lot of stuff that Weitzel hasn’t lol

Gold Medal Mel
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

On so many different group texts on this topic, I’ve seen every possibility. My opinion has not changed since before the OGs. No numbers/data, just think you lead with a male athlete in the back and breast… I’ve been in OG and WC relays. Once you get behind, you’re battling rough water. (I’d like to see data on the impact of rough water compared to racing in smooth water… The impact may be bigger than we would guess.)

Thomas Selig
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel
3 months ago

But Peaty split a near-PB and Guy had a big PB split going after a female for GB? I tend to agree that all else being equal, you probably want to go MMFF, but all else is never really equal. I do think M on breaststroke and F on free are pretty much mandatory except in exceptional circumstances (e.g. King when she was on top form *and* the US were struggling in the men’s 100 breast, or Chalmers if Aus’s top 15 or so women 100 freestylers all got injured at once).

I think beyond that FMMF and MMFF can both make sense depending on your strengths (e.g. for GB FMMF is clearly the best line-up). To go MFFM… Read more »

The Original Tim
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel
3 months ago

Absolutely nowhere even close to the OG/WC level, but I do a ton of relays in masters, including mixed relays. The gap in our respective performances, and potential performances, is usually substantially higher than the delta you see at really any elite level meet, so often times we aren’t able to lead off with 2 men on our mixed relays.

Whether it’s a free or medley relay, chances are I’m on the back half of the relay dealing with the rough water. I certainly haven’t been able to dig into the data and quantify it, but there’s a distinctly noticeable difference when I’m racing in rough water vs clean water. On our medley relays, I’m often on the fly leg,… Read more »

Last edited 3 months ago by The Original Tim
Miss M
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel
3 months ago

There are two obvious choices: MMFF or FMMF.

tea rex
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel
3 months ago

How do you square that with the Lezak-Agnel-D Scott splits we’ve seen where they drafted to times way faster than they’d go individually?

jim
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

This is the correct comment….even on paper, this made the most sense…why USA didn’t go with this plan is beyond me. They might’ve thought that MA would be gassed for this race, but while MA does his own thing in training, the one thing you can’t dismiss is his love for his country. I think he would have more than been honored to be considered to be a part of this relay (heck, another opportunity to medal at the olympics has to be worth the energy spent to do the race, right?!?

If you wanted to try to beat the brits, you had to have one leg on the relay that was far and away better than anyone else in… Read more »

Njones
Reply to  jim
3 months ago

Except the one flaw here is that Dressel is NOT the aggregate difference maker any more because he’s a fly/free guy and now Huske is 6 sec behind him instead of Dahlia at 7.5 ish. It doesn’t matter that Dressel is that far ahead of the other males if most aren’t swimming fly.
With most men swimming breast and Peatty 9 to 10 sec clear of the best female Brit it’s a double whammy advantage.

DLswim
Reply to  jim
3 months ago

His love for himself, you mean.

tea rex
Reply to  PhillyMark
3 months ago

Honestly, I think the coaches were just looking not to use MA on a relay. USA’s fastest relay would probably use Fink, but the Andrews would have raised bloody hell if that happened. At that point, MA had 2 disappointing individual swims, would be coming off the 50 free, and was… let’s say not making great press.

M d e
Reply to  tea rex
3 months ago

You think that the fastest US relay features a swimmer that was slower in the 100 brst in every swim at trials and the olympics?

ddd
3 months ago

Even if I saw Caleb’s condition at the event before the 4x200m freestyle relay, I think he was definitely at least 1 minute 45 seconds low.

Last edited 3 months ago by ddd
There's no doubt that he's tightening up
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
3 months ago

Whilst it’s certainly possible, I don’t think that “for sure” Caeleb could split 45 low or 44 high.

After all, Chalmers is just about at this level, and he actually has the 200 free as part of his major meet program. He’s also actually faster than Caeleb in the swimming portion of the 100 (which matters more for a 200 free, where Caeleb’s advantage off the start is reduced by the fact that he has to swim twice as long).

Robbos

Stop using commonsense in this discussion, everything you said makes perfect sense, but it doesn’t help is the general consensus, without any facts that Dressel could’ve gone 1.44 low or even 1.43 high.
I mean Chalmers trains for 200, is beaten by Dressel in the 100 mainly because of Dressel amazing start, but Chalmers at best is a 1.44 high swimmer, but Dressel would go faster, uhhhh!!!!!

swimswamsers
Reply to  Robbos
3 months ago

Is there nothing else to do in Australia but talk shit on swimswam – that was rhetorical.

Robbos
Reply to  swimswamsers
3 months ago

Sorry you don’t like facts!!!!

swimswamsers

I doubt chalmers can go 3:40 in season in the 400 im. give it a rest boys. You look sad

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
3 months ago

Look, the whole “he wasn’t fully tapered at OTs” was clearly not as true as people thought. Dropped .3-.4 in the 100 free and 100 fly, but he also had much greater competition in Tokyo to push him. If Milak and Chalmers were at OTs, I’m sure he would’ve done the same time as at Tokyo on the same rest schedule. He added time in the 50 free. Tougher overall schedule with all the relays. The idea that he would drop from a 1:46.6 to 1:45 low or 44+ with a tougher load management schedule is just the ultimate in wishful thinking. He looked terrible in the last 100 of that 1:46.6, and it wasn’t because he was shutting down.… Read more »

VA Steve
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
3 months ago

Thankfully there is a start.

M d e
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
3 months ago

1:44 is very fast.

Even 1:45 low is elite

Riccardo
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
3 months ago

I’ll preface this with I’ll never pick Chalmers to beat Caeleb in the 100 when it’s all on the line.

But Chalmers is more accomplished in the 200 and unquestionably faster on top of the water – he split 1:45.3. I have a hard time seeing Caeleb go faster than that.

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Riccardo
3 months ago

Bingo.

PhillyMark
3 months ago

Thanks for great interview Mel! Nice complement to cup of coffee in am

Ger
3 months ago

Did Mel just say Dressel’s fly finish was the worst Olympic finish ever? 1988 anyone?

Mr Piano
Reply to  Ger
3 months ago

2008 as well. Because although Dressel was long into the wall, he didn’t lift up his head like cavic at least.

Michael Andrew Wilson
Reply to  Ger
3 months ago

I think he left the sentence unfinished, I was definitely thinking 1988 as well. Of course Mel was there in ’88, may not have watched it as much on TV as we did, nor wanted to throw Matt under the bus.

Steve Nolan
3 months ago

Thought you guys lost all the US Olympians numbers, fiiiinally. (Had about enough hearing about all that Aussie coffee tbh 🧐)

Aussie Crawl
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

Aussie Coffee the best.
Flat white….

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Aussie Crawl
3 months ago

A “flat white” just sounds so unappealing.

That said, I don’t drink any coffee at all so guess it doesn’t matter what country it’s coming from.

Joel
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

I’m biased but I reckon the Aussies are a bit more laidback and honest in their podcasts.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

They’ve all been pretty chill! (I’ve been to Australia once and honestly considered moving there it was so nice, but once every four years I will focus the hate of 10,000 suns towards their swim team.)

Tho I want Coleman to start asking about previous Aussie Olympic party habits DURING the meet. My new hypothesis is they did so well in Tokyo b/c they weren’t out until 3a playing knifey spoony every night.

Joel
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

Your hypothesis is wrong, as usual Steve.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

Your comma is in the wrong place as usual, Joel.

Sounds like you haven’t played knifey spoony before.

Rap
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

Lol US can’t handle not being in the limelight for 5 seconds.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Rap
3 months ago

Lol no I thought all of the Aussie pods were great! I just thought it got super weird that we got half of their roster before we got many US Olympians. (Was Jacoby the only one?)

I assume the Aussies being stuck in a hotel for two weeks made some of them a bit more likely to want to start dishin’, lol.

Facts
3 months ago

Shotgun a beer every time Mel says buddy

Admin
Reply to  Facts
3 months ago

When Mel calls me Buddy, it’s because he’s mad at me.

Pvdh
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 months ago

Just pretend Mel is Willie Nelson in those moments

Old Retired Guy
3 months ago

Shall we give this article a “WOOT”? Why yes, yes we shall give this article a “WOOT”. WOOT..!!

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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