Chad Le Clos Reportedly Dropping Medley Relay To Focus On 100 Fly


South African Chad Le Clos has apparently pulled out of the men’s 400 medley relay to focus on the men’s 100m butterfly final. The medley relay prelims are scheduled for tomorrow morning, while the 100 fly final is tomorrow night.

This decision comes after Le Clos put everything into the 200 free final, swimming incredibly an risky race going out in 23.39 on the opening 50, and subsequently not having enough gas to even win a medal in his best event, the 200 fly the following night. Le Clos still won silver in the 200 free, but the 200 fly was the one he really wanted.

Le Clos was the 2015 World Champion in the 100 fly, but rival Michael Phelps posted a time later that same day at the U.S. National Championships that was faster. After coming up short in the 200, Le Clos doesn’t want to risk anything before this one.

The subtraction of Le Clos from the South African medley relay likely dumps any chances they had of making the final down the tubes. They had three solid legs in Christopher ReidCameron van der Burgh and Le Clos lined up which was going to give them a legitimate shot at a finals berth if their freestyler, either Douglas Erasmus or Brad Tandy, could put together a solid anchor.

Now they are definite long shots to final, with former Michigan Wolverine Dylan Bosch likely getting the call to swim fly in the prelims in Le Clos’ place. Bosch qualified to swim the 800 free relay, where the South Africans failed to final with Le Clos sitting out.


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Upset fan
7 years ago

The South African relay team consists of a 53.1 backstroker a silver medalist 100 breastroker a 50. Flyer and a pick your poison of a 49 low 100 free/ a guy who qualified for the 50 free final tomorrow night. As a fan of swimming besides the Brits and the Americans youre telling me RSA can’t compete for a bronze/top 5 finish? Cmon Chad do better, it’s the one relay as a nation you can possibly compete with the world in

Reply to  Upset fan
7 years ago

I don’t think that future funding levels would be helped by Chad getting 4th in the 100 fly, and the relay competing well in the final and also getting 4th. It’s a no-brainier to stake everything on a medal in the 100fly. Silver was disappointing, but better than nothing.

7 years ago

Incredibly selfish. Stravius scratched an individual event for the team relay, as did Shen Duo. Hosszu and Sjostrom swim relays even when there is no medal hope. Team should always come before personal endeavors. Here’s hoping it Phelps, Schooling, and Shields for 1,2,3 tomorrow.

7 years ago


7 years ago

That kid can’t swim fly

Reply to  Anon
7 years ago

Calvyn time trialed in the freestyle leg for the medley in SA olympic trials

Pau Hana
7 years ago

How reliable is this source?

7 years ago

Christopher Reid (RSA Backstroker) dropped the 200 Back at their trials so they could time trial the relay and qualify for the Olympics! Now Le Clos drops the relay? Talk about letting down his teammates and his country! This is so selfish. I’ve lost respect for him.

Reply to  uaswim
7 years ago

Bamas a joke tho

Reply to  Frank
7 years ago

6th in the nation at NCAA’s this year.

Pau Hana
7 years ago

Aren’t the medley relay prelims the morning of the relay? i.e. the last morning, the day after the 100 fly?

Reply to  Pau Hana
7 years ago

No Medley prelims for Men and Women are the day before.
There are no Pre-lims the final day since the only finals are 1500, Women’s 50, and Medley for Men and Women.

Pau Hana
Reply to  xman
7 years ago

Ok thanks. Makes sense for ticket purposes I suppose but wish they were consistent.

7 years ago


Reply to  Pvdh
7 years ago

Phelps at the age of 31 was game to do a 200 free after doing a 200 fly.

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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