Dressel Is First Man Since 2007 To Own Records in 100 Yard, SCM, and LCM Fly

2020 INTERNATIONAL SWIMMING LEAGUE – FINAL

Not since 2007 has one man simultaneously owned the fastest times in history in all three variations of the 100 butterfly: short course yards, short course meters, and long course meters. That man was Ian Crocker.

Today, Caeleb Dressel becomes the first man since Crocker to simultaneously own the fastest times in history in the 100 butterfly in short course yards, short course meters, and long course meters following his World Record performance in the 100 SCM butterfly at the ISL Grand Final in Budapest.

In the first men’s race of the day, Dressel squared off with the now former World Record holder Chad le Clos as well as the now former American Record holder, Tom Shields.

Le Clos set the previous World Record in December 2016 in 48.08, though Dressel blew it away with a stunning 47.78. Le Clos and Shields also put up some of the fastest times in history, clocking in at 48.45 and 48.47, respectively. Le Clos is now the second-fastest man in history while Shields remains the third-fastest, passing Russian Evgeny Korotyshkin but being passed himself by Dressel, but enough with today’s events, let’s look at the historical significance of Dressel’s performance.

In 2002, Ian Crocker broke the NCAA, U.S. Open, and American Record in the 100 fly for the first time, clocking a 45.44. In 2004 Crocker would lower this mark to a 44.72 at the Big 12 Championships. In the year between, Crocker became the World Record holder in the 100 LCM butterfly at the 2003 World Championships in Barcelona, also earning the title of first man under 51 in the race.

The 2004 NCAA Championships were held in a short course meters pool, making it impossible for Crocker to lower his yards record any further that season, though it gave him the opportunity to go after something greater, the World Record.

At the 2004 NCAA Championships, Crocker squared-off with then-World Record holder in the 100 SCM butterfly, Serbian Milorad Cavic who swam for Cal-Berkeley. Crocker broke Cavic’s record in both prelims and finals, first registering a 49.77 to become the first man under 50, and then taking it down again to 49.07 in finals, beating Cavic by almost 2 seconds.

With this, Crocker had completed the trifecta and now owned the 100 butterfly records in all three pools. Crocker would hold this esteemed position until March 2007 and the NCAA Championships when his yards time was bested by Venezuelan and Arizona Wildcat Albert Subirats with a 44.57. Just a couple of weeks later, Subirats would win the bronze medal at the 2007 World Championships behind Crocker, who took silver, and Michael Phelps, who won gold.

Below is a table with the years that Crocker held the numerous records in the 100 butterfly. It’s worth noting that Crocker broke the World Record in the 100 LCM butterfly three times, the 100 SCM butterfly two times, and the American, NCAA, and U.S. Open records in the 100 yard butterfly two times. (It is also true that Crocker broke the NCAA and U.S. Open Records in the 100 SCM butterfly twice since those races took place at an NCAA Championship, but let’s keep things simple.)

As the table shows, Crocker was the fastest 100 butterflyer in history in all three pools simultaneously from March 2004 to March 2007.

Crocker’s Records & Reign (Simplified)

Course Years Held
SCY 03/28/2002 – 03/16/2007
SCM 03/26/2004 – 11/07/2009
LCM 07/26/2003 – 07/09/2009

This table shows the duration of time for which Crocker was the fastest in history in each venue of the 100 fly and for simplicity has omitted each time he broke his own records. The table below tracks Crocker’s record progressions over the years.

Crocker’s Record Progressions

2002 2003 2004 2005
SCY 45.44 X 44.72 X
SCM X X 49.77 | 49.07 X
LCM X 50.98 50.76 50.40

Crocker truly assaulted the record books in 2004, first lowering his own yards record, then breaking the World Record in SCM twice in one day, and then again at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials in Long Beach where he demolished his year-old LCM record.

By comparison, Caeleb Dressel has broken the American, NCAA, and U.S. Open Record in the 100 yard butterfly twice, the World Record in the 100 LCM butterfly once, and the World Record in the 100 SCM butterfly once.

Dressel’s Records & Reign (Simplified)

Course Years Held
SCY 03/24/2017-
SCM 11/21/2020-
LCM 07/26/2019-

As of this writing, November 21, 2020, Dressel is simultaneously the fastest 100 butterflyer of all time in all three pools. He will have to keep these titles for 2 years, 11 months, and 18 days in order to match Crocker’s reign as the ultimate king of the 100 butterfly.

Dressel’s Record Progressions

2017 2018 2019 2020
SCY 43.58 42.80 X X
SCM X X X 47.78
LCM X X 49.50 X

Like Crocker, Dressel’s first record to fall to another swimmer is most likely to be his SCY mark at 42.80 since the NCAA is a pressure cooker of insanely fast swimming. Dressel’s LCM record is probably safest, and he stands the best chance of lowering it between now and the next ISL season. He is unlikely to ever swim a 100 SCY butterfly fully tapered again, so it’s difficult to see him lowering his best time of 42.80 in yards, though pros do occasionally surprise us with spectacular yards swims. As for his brand new SCM record, it’s probably safe until at least the next ISL Final or FINA World Championship (SCM edition). World Records are sometimes beaten in FINA World Cup competition, but the time he put up today is so far ahead of everyone else who has ever swam the race, it’s safe to wager it’ll probably stand for a while.

Watch a video of Dressel’s race in the tweet below.

Dressel 100 LCM Butterfly WR – 49.50 – 2019

Dressel 100 SCY Butterfly NCAA, U.S. Open, American Record – 42.80 – 2018

Dressel 100 SCY Butterfly NCAA, U.S. Open, American Record – 43.58 – 2017

 

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Splash
2 years ago

I don’t get why this is such a big deal… With only the US swimming yards, it greatly impacts many swimmers ability to even possibly achieve this

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Splash
2 years ago

Except many swimmers come to the USA & CAN swim yards as well. Goes back decades.

Adam Depmore
2 years ago

Ian actually held 4 world records in the fly at once. Held the 50 LCM having set it right before 2004 NCAAs at a time trial.

Philip Johnson
2 years ago

Crocker was a beast, I will always remember that 50.40.

Olympian
2 years ago

Ok, this just made me curious to see him swimming a 200 fly… As a matter of fact, I’d love to see Caeleb swimming all the events, let’s find this man’s limit!! (If there’s even one)

Zanna
Reply to  Olympian
2 years ago

200 IM!

Admin
Reply to  Olympian
2 years ago

I’d love to see this!

I wish they’d throw together a ‘time trial’ day for the Monday after finals, where everyone can swim whatever race they want ‘just to see.’ Dressel’s got enough 100 flys and 50 frees, I want to see him do a 200 IM, or a 200 fly, or a 200 free when he’s in this state.

CRD
Reply to  Braden Keith
2 years ago

Am I wrong in thinking that time trials after a taper meet is a very American thing, because to my knowledge it doesnt happen in Europe, only in the US.

Dudeman
Reply to  CRD
2 years ago

I’m Canadian and swam in the US for college and it was an only US thing for me too, I never heard of any meets having a time trial after the actual meet at home

Admin
Reply to  Dudeman
2 years ago

I think it’s mostly a ‘yards’ thing. Since both yards and long course meters carry such importance here (as compared to most countries where it’s long course and then everything else in a clear heirarchy), people try to capture that performance taper when they can.

If the ISL makes the world care more about SCM than it has historically, maybe we’ll see more of a rise in that around the world.

Kurt W
2 years ago

Matt Gribble. RIP. 1983. WR 100 fly and American record 100 yards. U of Miami Hurricane.

Joe
2 years ago

Didn’t notice this before, but at the 1:10 mark on the video of Dressel’s 47, when Chad Le Clos looks up at the board and sees the result, he rips off his cap and smashes the time pad in rage. Only later does he come over for the handshake.

And man, Crocker’s 50.40 doesn’t get any less amazing every time I read about it.

Pvdh
Reply to  Joe
2 years ago

I think that’s probably for losing the race even though he went a crazy fast time too. He probably didn’t expect Dressel to drop that much time

Joe
Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Yeah for sure. Imagine going 48.4, half a second quicker than anyone has ever been in the history of the ISL, only for some chump 2 lanes over to not only smoke you, but also break your only WR on the books.

I’d be pissed. It’s like in a video game where you’re doing everything so well, only to get screwed over by some scripting/overpowered AI.

Andrew
Reply to  Joe
2 years ago

Yeah honestly, I’m a huge Caeleb Dressel fan but you made me realize it must hurt to be Chad le Clos or Florent Manaudou right now. At the level they already were at, Dressel dropping that much time sounds like badly written plot armor.

KimJongSpoon
Reply to  Andrew
2 years ago

I’ve said it before half jokingly but Dressel has somewhat ruined the excitement of a race for me. Not only has he set ridiculous expectations for sprinters, but it’s now impossible to cheer for anyone else because we all know Dressel’s just going to steamroll them. He just absolutely trivializes every other sprinter’s efforts.

Will 37
Reply to  KimJongSpoon
2 years ago

Dominant athletes pop up in any individual sport. To me, it is just as exciting seeing athletes making historical statements as watching close competitions. It is the reason for records to be faster and faster. I do not think “Dressel trivializes every other sprinter’s effort”. It is not like he is not facing any sort of competitions whatsoever, and I do not think 2nd, 3rd places finishes mean absolutely nothing. Just think about British breaststrokers in the 100/50. Athletes themselves have their own expectations and embrace the pressure. Otherwise, no one would be striving for records, or national teams.

Tea rex
Reply to  KimJongSpoon
2 years ago

Dressed lost several races this season

Pvdh
Reply to  Andrew
2 years ago

Yea you gotta feel for Flo. He’s made a successful comeback and he’s murking everyone in the 50s…outside of the one guy thats murking him

Will 37
Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Flo still got tight competition with Ben Proud and Morozov in the 50 free. Look at 2018 Hangzhou SCM worlds. Proud is injured this season, while Vlad is out of shape. The tall Greek guy who won bronze medal last year in the 50, swims for LA Current is not that far behind, and has been steadily improving.

Sun yang
Reply to  Will 37
2 years ago

the tall greek guy has a name: Gkolomeev

Dudeman
Reply to  Joe
2 years ago

He was also the first person to come over and shake Dressel’s hand, it must be hard to have a great swim like that and still be destroyed by the better part of a second, lose your record and then put yourself together in about 3 seconds to congratulate someone

PVSFree
Reply to  Dudeman
2 years ago

I also respect that as soon as Dressel saw Le Clos coming over to congratulate him, he got off the lane line. He realized that what Chad was doing wasn’t the easiest thing and respected it. Dressel’s just such a good guy and good ambassador for the sport. It’s hard to make someone so humble a villain

swimgeek
Reply to  PVSFree
2 years ago

All true. Does Dressel ever say the wrong thing? Dude is humble. Smart. Very intelligent. He’s gonna be a massive star in Tokyo next summer. Fans of USA swimming are very spoiled to go from 5 straight Olympics of MP to Dressel moving up to top dog.

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  PVSFree
2 years ago

Yes, that was class on Caeleb’s part.

Anonymoose
2 years ago

didnt know cavic was cucked by crocker as well before phelps came along. tough luck for that guy

klorn8d
2 years ago

Are there any other events are the fastest scy/scm/lcm swims all held by the same person? I can’t think of any, king might do it tomorrow in the 100 breast. Ledecky and Regan smith could probably do it if they fully tapered scm.

klorn8d
Reply to  klorn8d
2 years ago

that is horrible grammar and I see that now hahaha

PhillyMark
Reply to  klorn8d
2 years ago

Lochte had all the 200 IM records for a couple years until Nolan broke 1:40

Anonymous
Reply to  klorn8d
2 years ago

neither is still current but recently I think Hosszu held the 4IM for about a year until Belmonte broke the scm wr in 2017; Rebecca Soni also held the 200 brst for a few months following London until her yards record was broken

About Reid Carlson

Reid Carlson

Reid Carlson originally hails from Clay Center, Kansas, where he began swimming at age six.  At age 14 he began swimming club year-round and later with his high school team, making state all four years.  He was fortunate enough to draw the attention of Kalamazoo College where he went on to …

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