Canadian Men Move Up to Top Wildcard in 400 Free Relay


  • Toronto Pan American Sports Center, Toronto, Canada
  • May 26-28, 2021
  • Long Course Meters (50m)
  • Results on MM: “Take5 HP Event”
  • Live Results

Thursday night in Toronto, the Canadian men time trialed the 400 free relay in an attempt to improve their ranking in the event for this summer’s Tokyo Olympics.

After last week’s European Championships, the Canadian men were sitting in the fourth and final Wildcard position with a time of 3:15.06.

The qualification period for relays runs through May 31, giving countries only four more days to claim a Wildcard spot.

On Thursday, the Canadians were able to drop nearly two seconds from their previous time to jump up into the top Wildcard spot. Brent Hayden (48.47), Joshua Liendo (48.28), Yuri Kisil (48.03), and Markus Thormeyer (48.31) finished in 3:13.09. This time comes within a second of the Canadian record of 3:12.26. The record was set in 2008 at the Beijing Olympics and featured Hayden leading-off in a then-Canadian record of 47.56.

Canada improving their time doesn’t bump any country out of the rankings but just changes positions as Switzerland, Serbia, and the Netherlands all move down one spot.

The Canadian men have already qualified the 400 medley relay by virtue of placing 10th in prelims at the 2019 FINA World Championships. In the 800 free relay, their current time of 7:14.01 is just over two seconds away from the fourth Wildcard spot occupied by Ireland at 7:12.00. They are expected to time trial the 800 free relay tonight as the final event of the meet.

The current rankings of the men’s 400 free relay:

Rank Country Time
Worlds #1 United States 3:09.06
Worlds #2 Russia 3:09.97
Worlds #3 Australia 3:11.22
Worlds #4 Italy 3:11.39
Worlds #5 Great Britain 3:11.81
Worlds #6 Brazil 3:11.99
Worlds #7 Hungary 3:12.85
Worlds #8 France 3:13.34
Worlds #9 Japan 3:14.16
Worlds #10 Greece 3:14.44
Worlds #11 Germany 3:14.58
Worlds #12 Poland 3:14.78
Wildcard #1 Canada 3:13.09
Wildcard #2 Switzerland 3:13.41
Wildcard #3 Serbia 3:13.73
Wildcard #4 Netherlands 3:13.79
Out #1 Belgium 3:15.34
Out #2 Sweden 3:15.83
Out #3 China 3:16.23
Out #4 Ukraine 3:16.24

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1 year ago

I think the Olympic final will be USA, Russia, Australia, Great Britain, Italy, Hungary, Brazil, and Japan.

Joris Bohnson
Reply to  Notanyswimmer
1 year ago

Don’t eject France so quickly , they still have 3 guys who can go sub 48 (Metella, Manaudou, Grousset) and a 48 flat (Mignon)

1 year ago

In other relay qualifying news – the Koreans swam a 7:11.45 4x200m (men) at their national championships, so are 3rd on the rankings, while the Greek 4x100m Medley (men) swan 3:34.61 today, which knocks out the Irish by 0.01.

Reply to  Iain
1 year ago

South korea time was already counted on The updated list of Europeans

Reply to  Iain
1 year ago

And South Africa will time trial men medley relay? On the site this event is not listed

1 year ago

Interesting. They flew in all the HPC athletes into Toronto (during a provincial and city shutdown) to run a private time trial….. does this mean they wanted to see where the HPC athletes were in their speed before hand picking an Olympic Team when they cancel the next trials? Hmmmmmm mm

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

Trials are definitely going ahead. Hand-picking a team is the last thing they wanna do, it would open the door for so many appeals

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

They needed to squeeze in the relays before the end of this month; if they were cancel the trials they needed Mcintosh to swim 400 and 800 metres this week…

Reply to  idk
1 year ago

There are many non-HPC Ontario swimmers at this time trial and great idea to get the relays together for the men. Success yesterday and so happy for those 4 guys!

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

Canadian Swimming has provided poor optics for the world to see. Happy for swimmers doing well in spite of the odds however the decision makers have handled things dismally.

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

COVID numbers are dropping fast in Ontario and trials are going ahead. I heard that times done in this time trial will be considered for selection to the Olympic team. I wonder if some swimmers have decided to taper for this meet instead of trials next month.

Layne 4
Reply to  Catherine
1 year ago

Yes, tapered and shaved. Guess who?

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

What’s your plan?

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

All the negativity and assuming the worst on so many threads must be exhausting, but it is all going out the window June 19-23. Hopefully you decide to hop on the excited to watch Canadian swimming trials bus soon. It’s a lot more fun!

Reply to  Golgotha
1 year ago

You are so cynical. Why not celebrate the impressive performances of these hard-working athletes under incredibly difficult circumstances.

1 year ago

Can we talk for just a min here about the fact that Hayden at 37, 18 months of training after a 7yr retirement, just dropped a 48.47…?!?! Now I know that’s not going scare Dressel per se but it still an in season swim with trials 3 weeks away that he is aiming to peak to qualify, yet it is only 4 hundreds slower than his suited 2007 world champs win! I think his lifetime best jammers swim was around 47.8.

I’d like to know what over-35 performances are on par or better than that. I’m sure there’s a few, ie. Nick Santos 50 fly, Anthony Erwin 50 free 2016, but I don’t think there are very many.

Reply to  Njones
1 year ago

“Anthony Erwin” … nice Freudian slip

Reply to  AThomas
1 year ago


Reply to  Njones
1 year ago

Ervin also dropped a 47 split in the morning preliminaries of the 4×100 free relay in Rio. However I agree that Hayden’s swim is impressive.

1 year ago

Amazing relay! They all swam lights out vs their individual 100 free day before. So happy for these men putting it down as a team when it really counts! Hayden also locked in Fina A on lead off. Huge congratulations all around.

1 year ago

Given the Canadians performance in 4 X 100 free relay, i would count this 800 relay as better than 50/50 to make it!

JP input is too short
1 year ago

Let’s see here… They need to average 1:48.0.

Thormeyer’s best is 1:47.6, he was right about on his 100 best in the relay.
Pratt 1:48.3 best. Was only 1:50 yesterday but took it out only 26.4, maybe a little more aggression gets him something better.
Bagshaw 1:47.4 but that was back in 2015.
Looks like Knox broke 1:50 for the first time yesterday and he’s on a pretty good improvement curve.
Kisil 1:48.9, but in 2016.
Gaziev and Olafson also been under 1:50 recently.

I don’t think Hayden has been training for the 200, but maaaaaybe he’s got something for a relay? Do they go risk/reward there? I know he had a good 100 but… Read more »