2018 FINA SHORT COURSE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Tuesday, December 11th- Sunday, December 16th
- Hangzhou, China
- Tennis Centre, Hangzhou Olympic & International Expo Center
- SCM (25m)
- Prelims: 9:30 am local, 8:30 pm ET / Finals: 7:00 pm* local, 6:00* am ET
- *The final night of finals will be one hour earlier, starting at 6:00 pm local and 5:00 am ET
- Live Results (Omega)
Yesterday, American sprint star Caeleb Dressel unified the three American records in the men’s 100 free (yards, 25m, and 50m) by taking the SCM American Record with a 45.66 leadoff on the USA world record-setting 4×100 free relay.
Today, he led off the mixed medley relay in 20.43 to unofficially lay claim to all three American Records in the 50 free. While that time is 0.42s faster than Anthony Ervin‘s American record from the 2012 World Cup circuit, Dressel’s time will not officially count because it was done leading off a mixed relay.
Rules from both FINA and USA Swimming specify that leadoff legs from mixed gender relays are not eligible for world/American records. USA Swimming rule 104.2 C (1):
Lead-off legs/initial distances of mixed gender relays shall not count for American or U.S. Open records.
The presumed rationale for the rule is essentially that a man leading off in a field of women would encounter quite different water conditions than if he was swimming against seven other men. However, every single team had a man leading off, so while it may not officially count, Dressel’s swim was done in the same conditions he’d encounter in an individual 50 free, or leading off a men’s relay.
The good news for Dressel is that he won’t have to wait long to get another chance. With both the individual 50 free and the men’s 4×50 free relay coming later in the week, it would appear to be only a matter of time before Dressel replicates tonight’s performance and does officially unify all three USA men’s records in the 50 free.
A 20.43 in SCM converts to roughly a 18.3 or 18.4 in yards, suggesting that Dressel could be even faster as he gets more comfortable swimming in a 25m pool, after he lit up the swimming world (or least, domestic swim fans) with a 17.63 at the NCAA championships in March.
Per the USA Swimming Data Hub, only three men in history have been faster than Dressel’s 20.43 from tonight:
- Florent Manaudou – 20.26 – 2014
- Roland Schoeman – 20.30 – 2010
- Vladimir Morozov – 20.31 – 2017
Morozov has another three times where he’s been 20.4, and no one else has been under 20.5 more than once. While Morozov was “only” 20.75 leading off Russia’s relay tonight, he went 20.48 at the Singapore World Cup stop last month, and we should be in for a great battle between Morozov and Dressel later this week.
Prelims and semifinals of the 50 free will be tomorrow (Thursday), with finals coming Friday.