2016 RIO OLYMPIC GAMES
- Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- Swimming: August 6-13
- Olympic Aquatics Stadium, Barra Olympic Park, Rio de Janeiro
- Prelims – 9:00 a.m/12:00 p.m PST/EST (1:00 p.m local), Finals – 6:00 p.m/9:00 p.m PST/EST (10:00 p.m local)
- SwimSwam previews
- Rio Schedule & Results
- Live Stream (NBC)
It’s not a surprise that Australia’s 48-year drought in the men’s 100 freestyle has ended, but it is a surprise who ended it.
18 year-old Kyle Chalmers came into this meet like a man on a mission, posting two very fast relay splits in the men’s 400 free relay followed by three successive world junior records in the 100 freestyle, culminating with his gold medal performance tonight in a time of 47.58.
Characteristic to the style 2012 silver medalist James Magnussen used to swim this race, Chalmers turned at the 50 metre wall in 7th. He stormed home in a ridiculous 24.44, just two one-hundredths shy of Magnussen’s closing speed in his best swim ever back in March of 2012.
Magnussen managed to improve his front-end speed by four tenths of a second from 2011 to 2012, something that could push Chalmers towards the 47-second barrier later in his career.
The man who was expected to end the 48-year drought was Cameron McEvoy, who set an all-time textile best at the Aussie Trials in April of 47.04. What happened to him in this final is a mystery, as he ended up 7th after being the big favorite coming in. It’s the second straight night we’ve seen the #1 ranked swimmer in the world coming into the meet place 7th, after Laszlo Cseh did it in the 200 fly yesterday.
Chalmers swim is a new world junior record, breaking his semi-final record of 47.88. It’s also another Australian age group record, again breaking his own record.
Australia’s previous men’s 100 free winner was Michael Wenden all the way back in 1968. Both Magnussen in 2012 and McEvoy this year were the ones expected to finally bring the race back to the South, but alas it is the teenager Chalmers.