Defending World Champion Chase Kalisz Does Not Advance to 400 IM Final


A day after finishing third overall in the 200 IM, ending the United States’ streak of world titles in the event at eight, defending champion Chase Kalisz failed to advance to the final the 400 IM Sunday morning in Gwangju.

Kalisz finished 10th overall, two spots out of advancing. He split 57.04/1:05.35/1:11.15/1:02.08 for a  4:15.62, nearly 10 seconds off his best time of 4:05.90, and two seconds slower than he was in April (4:13.45); that swim ranked him seventh in the world heading into the meet. He posted the slowest free split of anyone who finished in the top-16.

The 25-year-old Kalisz is the third-fastest performer in history in the 400 IM behind only Ryan Lochte (4:05.18) and world record holder Michael Phelps (4:03.84), the only other men to break 4:06. He saw relatively little racing in 2019 prior this meet, only notching two 400 IMs, and both were at the TYR Pro Swim Series stop in Richmond.

Japan’s Daiya Seto, who won the 400 IM in 2013 and 2015 (and the 200 IM earlier this meet), will have a chance to reclaim his title after earning the top qualfying spot. Take a look at the top eight, which includes Kalisz’s Univeristy of Georgia teammate Jay Litherland:


  1. Daiya Seto (JPN) – 4:12.27
  2. Arjan Nipping (NED) – 4:13.46
  3. Jay Litherland (USA) – 4:13.78
  4. Max Litchfield (GBR) – 4:14.35
  5. Lewis Clareburt (NZL) – 4:14.56
  6. Maksym Shemberev (AZE) – 4:14.62
  7. Joanllu Pons (ESP) – 4:15.14
  8. Phillip Heintz (GER) – 4:15.24

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Chase Kalisz remains the best and brightest hope for double gold in Tokyo 2020.
With his speed in the 4:05 range, he can be deadly to any opponent.
When the analysis comes – later today – or back in the states — I think they’ll discover a palpable reason like illness or dehydration.


Yeah, if I were to guess I’d guess that there is some illness. Even if he was not tapered that time would still be super bad.


Goes back to that FINA memo about diarrhea running thru some teams at this meet


“…diarrhea running…” I see what you did there


Or he didn’t prepare all year to do any better?


i mean i couldn’t think of anyone more consistent than Chase Kalisz on the men’s side in this event. id say there’s a 99.999% chance he’s sick….he goes sub 4:10 in season


I agree. I have been very impressed by him for the last 2 years he’s been so consistent!


He went 4:13 in season. Not 4:10

E Gamble

This was the first year that he didn’t win the lease of the BMW . And he missed quite a few TYR Pro Series meets this year.


Double gold…. have you heard of Caeleb Dressel?


I doubt if there is an illness. He has been in a training slump. Just look at the Bulldog Grand Slam. He swam prelims in several races but only one final.


Wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t taper for this meet.




utter disaster.


nope , just one very off day , happens to the best

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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