Campbell Splits 50.93 As Aussies Post 2nd Fastest Mixed Medley Ever

2018 PAN PACIFIC CHAMPIONSHIPS

The Australian team of Mitch LarkinJake PackardEmma McKeon and Cate Campbell posted the 2nd fastest mixed 400 medley relay in history to win gold at the Pan Pacific Championships in Tokyo in a time of 3:38.91. That breaks the Commonwealth Record of 3:40.18 set just a few days ago by Great Britain at the European Championships, and takes out their Oceanian and Australian mark of 3:41.21 from the 2017 World Championships.

Larkin led off with his fastest 100 back of the year in 53.08, just behind Japan’s Ryosuke Irie (52.83), and Packard (58.68) and McKeon (56.22) had strong legs to keep the team within striking distance of Japan.

Campbell anchored the Aussies in 50.93, the fastest freestyle leg in history, as they roared past Japan for the gold. That split for Campbell eclipses her 51.00 from the Commonwealth Games.

Great Britain, 2018 Euros Australia, 2018 Pan Pacs
Georgia Davies – 59.12 Mitch Larkin – 53.08
Adam Peaty – 57.27 Jake Packard – 58.68
James Guy – 50.96 Emma McKeon – 56.22
Freya Anderson – 52.83 Cate Campbell – 50.93
3:40.18 3:38.91

Along with the top backstroke split from Irie, Japan had the fastest breast and fly legs in the field from Yasuhiro Koseki (58.57) and Rikako Ikee (55.53), and Tomomi Aoki brought them home in 54.05 as they set a new Asian Record in 3:40.98. That took out China’s 3:41.25 from the 2017 Worlds, and crushes their previous Japanese Record of 3:53.69.

The Americans were the heavy favorites coming in after setting the world record in Budapest last summer, but went with a questionable lineup and ultimately were back in 3rd place in 3:41.74.

The lineup they used last summer was man/woman/man/woman, and that was their expected lineup once again. Lilly King is the top female breaststroker in the field, either Ryan Murphy or Matt Grevers is the top male backstroker, and Caeleb Dressel and Simone Manuel are slam-dunk choices on the back end. The team of Grevers, King, Dressel and Manuel set the world record last summer in 3:38.56.

However, they opted to use Kathleen Baker on the backstroke leg and Michael Andrew on the breaststroke leg instead of Murphy/Grevers and King. Baker set a new world record at Nationals in the 100 back in 58.00, but was well off that here in 59.29. Andrew split 59.21, much better than he did individually earlier in the session (1:00.04), and Dressel (50.50) and Manuel (52.74) were both off their best but still solid. The team may have underperformed a bit, but it was the lineup choice that really hurt them.

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Swimmingnerd
4 years ago

Yes. This was such a poor decision. Especially when you have basically the same relay team here. So disappointing

iLikePsych
4 years ago

Last week: “OMG Freya Anderson split 52.8!!”
This week, Cate Campbell: “Kneel before me”

dmswim
4 years ago

While Michael Andrew stepped up and put down a much stronger split than I would have predicted looking at his individual race, I don’t see how you leave King off of this relay. Michael, at his best, is middle of the pack among breaststrokers at this meet, while Lilly is the best by over a second and is a consistent performer. I don’t understand the logic.

25 free champ
Reply to  dmswim
4 years ago

Why do people think that it matters how you stack up against other breaststrokers? Why don’t the commenters get it? King was the best choice but not because she’s a second faster than other females.

Hswimmer
Reply to  25 free champ
4 years ago

It matters if you want to win

Tea rex
4 years ago

Why didn’t Canada use Masse on back? Or even Ruck???

Rice
4 years ago

For me there were 2 possible options, none like the race USA swum tonight it should have been:
Murphy
King
Dressel
Manuel
OR:
Baker
King
Dressel
Apple/Pieroni/Adrian/OTHER THEY’RE ALL CLOSE

However looking at Bakers swim here it’s clear that for me, the better option was the first

tea rex
4 years ago

The back half was a bit off from last year.
Dressel 49.92 vs 50.50
Manuel 52.17 vs 52.74

That’s + 1.15 sec. Even if Grevers/King swam the same as in 2017, USA would be 3:39.81 for silver.

tea rex
4 years ago

Where are splits? The meet resutls doesn’t seem to show mixed relay?

Maelstrom
Reply to  tea rex
4 years ago

its there, its listed before the 400 ims

Tea rex
Reply to  Maelstrom
4 years ago

Thanks I see now – have to watch by day, not by event

IM FAN
4 years ago

Splits: 24.26/26.67

Sjostroms backhalf split from her WR is 26.88…

The scary thing Cate made this split with a big back half, not a big front half as she usually does

If Cate is on her mental game here and can perform her best in the finals serious WR watch.

GO SARAH SJÖSTRÖM
Reply to  IM FAN
4 years ago

24.26 is a really fast front half! That is NOT slow!

IM FAN
Reply to  GO SARAH SJÖSTRÖM
4 years ago

Yes, but I believe she was out in sub 24 when she did her 51.00 at CW.

Also in her PB of 52.06 she came home in 27.17

My point is in addition to the front half we all know C1 has, she seems to have added a strong backhalf into her arsenal as well.

As it looks right now, this is C1s race to lose if she is on her mental game.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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