2020 TOKYO SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES
- When: Pool swimming: Saturday, July 24 – Sunday, August 1, 2021
- Open Water swimming: Wednesday, August 4 – Thursday, August 5, 2021
- Where: Olympic Aquatics Centre / Tokyo, Japan
- Heats: 7 PM / Semifinals & Finals: 10:30 AM (Local time)
- Full aquatics schedule
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- Day 7 Finals Heat Sheet
- Mixed Medley Relay Lineups
The British swimmers put the world record in the mixed 400 medley relay up in flames in the event’s first-ever Olympic final, extinguishing the previous mark by over eight tenths of a second in 3:37.58.
The quartet of Kathleen Dawson (58.80), Adam Peaty (56.78), James Guy (50.00) and Anna Hopkin (52.00) obliterated the field by 1.28 seconds, with the former world record holders from China placing second in 3:38.86.
Dawson sat sixth after the opening 100 back leg, going three tenths slower than the prelims to rank second among all female lead-offs. Peaty then blasted a 56.78 split on breaststroke, the second-fastest ever, to propel the Brits up into fourth, with the three nations that led off with two men (Italy, China, Russian Olympic Committee) out ahead.
Guy then mowed down the three female butterfliers ahead of him, registering an all-time relay leg of 50.00—the sixth-fastest split ever, only trailing four from Caeleb Dressel and one from Michael Phelps.
Sitting six tenths ahead of China as she dove into the water, Hopkin left no doubt with her blazing-fast 52.00 anchor, the second-fastest among the seven female splits in the field (individual 100 free gold medalist Emma McKeon had the fastest for Australia in 51.73).
The final time of 3:37.58 for Great Britain also erases the Olympic, European and British Record of 3:38.75 that they broke in the prelims. The lone personnel change from that squad was Hopkin coming in for Freya Anderson on the freestyle leg.
After Dawson’s slight add from the prelims, the other three British swimmers combined to go nearly a second and a half faster than the splits from the heats, with Hopkin (0.59 seconds) and Guy (0.58 seconds) leading the way.
The biggest difference-maker compared to the former world record set by China, however, came from Peaty, as he made up more than a second on Yan Zibei. Hopkin gaining nearly seven tenths was also a key factor.
|China, Former WR||Great Britain, New WR||
Great Britain, Former ER
|Xu Jiayu – 52.45||Kathleen Dawson – 58.80||
Kathleen Dawson – 58.50
|Yan Zibei – 57.96||Adam Peaty – 56.78||Adam Peaty – 57.08|
|Zhang Yufei – 55.32||James Guy – 50.00||James Guy – 50.58|
|Yang Junxuan – 52.68||Anna Hopkin – 52.00||Freya Anderson – 52.59|
The Chinese team fielded the same four swimmers as they did when breaking the world record, with all four going slightly slower than they did in their record-swim last year.
The event ultimately produced four of the 12 swims sub-3:40 in history, including all three medalists cracking 3:39.
All-Time Performances, Mixed 400 Medley Relay (LCM)
- Great Britain, 3:37.58 – 2021 Olympic Games
- China, 3:38.41 – 2020 Chinese Championships
- United States, 3:38.56 – 2017 World Championships
- Great Britain, 3:38.75 – 2021 Olympic Games
- Great Britain, 3:38.82 – 2021 European Championships
- China, 3:38.86 – 2021 Olympic Games
- Australia, 3:38.91 – 2018 Pan Pacific Championships
- Australia, 3:38.95 – 2021 Olympic Games
- Australia, 3:39.08 – 2019 World Championships
- United States, 3:39.10 – 2019 World Championships
- Italy, 3:39.28 – 2021 Olympic Games
- China, 3:39.40 – 2020