Carli Cronk Thrives At World Deaf Swimming Championships With 12 Gold Medals


Carli Cronk was a dominant force at the 2023 World Deaf Swimming Championships in Buenos Aires, with the six-day competition wrapping up earlier this month in the Argentine capital.

Despite missing deaf world record holder Matthew Klotz, who is currently on Season 25 of Big Brother, the United States emerged atop the medal table with 13 gold and 25 total medals, primarily due to the performance of Cronk.

The 17-year-old Notre Dame Commit was nearly unstoppable, piling up 12 gold medals to go along with a pair of silvers, highlighted by her world record performance in the women’s 100 butterfly.

Cronk put up a time of 1:02.28 to lower the official deaf world record of 1:03.69, set by South African Peggy de Villiers in 2015, although it wasn’t a lifetime best for Cronk.

Cronk has actually been faster than 1:02.28 on six occasions, including hitting a PB of 1:01.04 last month at the Futures Championships in San Antonio, but none of those swims were ratified as deaf world records.

Cronk took on an unbelievably hectic schedule en route to winning 14 medals, so she only set personal bests in the 50 back (30.64) and 50 fly (28.57), the latter of which was the lone individual event she didn’t win, taking a close second to Italian Sara Maragno (28.53).

Cronk’s wins included new Championship Records in the women’s 100 free (58.32), 200 free (2:08.25), 400 free (4:31.16), 1500 free (18:02.70), 200 back (2:23.99) and 200 fly (2:19.57).

She also won the 800 free (9:25.59), 200 IM (2:23.11) and 400 IM (5:05.00) individually, and added a 12th title in the mixed 400 free relay, as she teamed up with Syler PizzolatoBrooke Thompson and Samuel Kohm as the U.S. touched first in 3:49.49 over Ukraine (3:51.10).


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Cronk’s second silver came in the mixed 400 medley relay, as she swam fly and teamed up with Collin Davis (back), Kohm (breast) and Thompson (free) as the Americans went 4:12.61 to trail Ukraine (4:10.73).

Also winning gold for the U.S. was Thompson, who topped the women’s 100 back (1:09.42) to give the American team 13 gold medals.

Ukraine closely trailed the U.S. team with 11 gold medals, and they were the top nation overall with 28 total medals.

In addition to Cronk’s swims, there were four other Championship Records broken at the meet:

Among those swims, the most noteworthy comes from Ukrainian Illia Sultanov, whose 50 free time of 23.19 was just five one-hundredths shy of the world record set by Matthew Klotz (23.14) in 2018. Klotz has been as fast as 22.85 in an unratified swim.

In addition to his 100 fly Championship Record, Japan’s Ryutaro Ibara won three more individual gold medals, narrowly missing his own CR in the 200 IM (2:05.77) while also claiming the 200 fly (2:05.68) and 400 IM (4:32.51).

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1st class lineman
6 months ago

Go Irish

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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