Defending U.S. Olympic Trials Champion Josh Prenot Misses 200 Breast Semifinal


Defending U.S. Olympic Trials champion Josh Prenot finished 17th in the men’s 200 breaststroke prelims race Wednesday morning. While he has the first alternate spot, unless someone ahead of him scratches he is out of the semifinal.

18-year-old Matt Fallon won the prelims race with a time of 2:10.13 and it took a 2:13.14 to make the semifinals.

Prenot split the race 1:04.89 / 1:08.53 for a final time of 2:13.42. his lifetime best time is 2:07.17 from the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials where he won the race and simultaneously broke the American Record that still stands today. He went on to win silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Prenot posted a thread to Twitter after the race. “I’m sorry to the people who have been rooting for me and believing in me. It’s not for a lack of effort, but I’m clearly not anywhere near my best and haven’t been for a while…”

He walked through his struggle to get back to peak performance level these past few years.

“Not taking my name off the anti-doping list just yet, but definitely not racing for the next year at least … Still a swim fan though,” he ended the Twitter thread. “Go bears, go Team USA.”

All-Time Top Ten U.S. 200 Breast Performers

  1. Josh Prenot – 2:07.17 (2016)
  2. Kevin Cordes – 2:07.41 (2017)
  3. Eric Shanteau – 2:07.42 (2009)
  4. Will Licon – 2:07.62 (2019)
  5. Andrew Wilson – 2:07.77 (2019)
  6. Nic Fink – 2:08.16 (2019)
  7. Brendan Hansen – 2:08.50 (2006)
  8. Daniel Roy – 2:08.89 (2020)
  9. Cody Miller – 2:08.98 (2019)
  10. Scott Weltz – 2:08.99 (2012)


In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
7 months ago

I wanna hug him and tell him that it’s okay.

7 months ago

That’s hard to read. Hopefully he has a strong support system around him.

Reply to  coach
7 months ago

I would hope others besides his wife. I know it must have been extremely hard in Cal during the pandemic. Not everyone could find pools and were able to train. It did look like he did a lot of traveling with his wife. I hope he can find some peace.

7 months ago

Your nationwide swim family loves you Josh, be good to yourself. Today in no way takes away your many successes.

M Palota
7 months ago

Two points:

1.) It really is “The Meet of Tears”. You’re crying when you make it, you’re crying when you don’t.

2.) Breaststroke is especially cruel. So much timing and feel. The smallest thing can throw everything off.

7 months ago

Sport can be cruel sometimes


7 months ago

Oh, this is tough to read. I’ve been there before at a much, much lower level and it was awful. Wishing him all the best!

7 months ago

Do his struggles have anything to do with the assistant coaching change Murphy mentioned when describing his own challenges this past quad? It doesn’t sound like an injury problem…

Reply to  M L
7 months ago

Yuri did not get the credit he deserved while at Cal.

Reply to  coach
7 months ago

Maybe. But I think Dave deserves a lot of credit for being willing to hire a club coach as his assistant. Most college coaches won’t, but most college coaches also aren’t Dave.

It was a huge opportunity and Yuri delivered and then some and got a great opportunity at Wisconsin as a result. Would love to see more club coaches get an opportunity.

7 months ago

Poor guy. This sport is absolutely brutal – like he said, there’s no one else to blame. Sometimes the sport we all love so much doesn’t love you back.

I know he’s incredibly smart though and will find his footing, a physics degree from Cal Berkeley is no joke.

M Palota
Reply to  PVSFree
7 months ago

He & Cam McEvoy’s physics Twitter is amazing. Two very big brains destined for very big things outside of the pool. Have a (good) feeling that for both of them that, at the end of the day, their swimming experiences will just a single chapter in their live’s stories.