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)
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The Japanese men’s 400 medley Olympic finals relay of Ryosuke Irie, Ryuya Mura, Naoki Mizunuma, and Katsumi Nakamura broke the event national record and Asian records at 3:29.91, shaving less than a tenth off the 2018 continental record formerly held by China. While this marked the first Asian/Japanese LCM medley relay under 3:30, their time only bested 6th in the Olympic final.
While backstroke ace Irie took his split out a half second slower than the former 2018 Japan record, as well as Mura’s breast split from Yasuhiro Koseki‘s national record split, the last two legs of the Japanese relay inced them ahead of the record line. On the fly leg, Mizunuma put together a 50.88 while Nakamura threw down a blazing 47.04, easily nine-tenths faster than both of the fastest Asian medley relays to date before this Olympic final. Notably, Nakamura missed the 100 free semifinals by placing 17th in prelims. His split could have medaled in the individual event.
|JPN, 2020 Tokyo Olympics||CHN, 2018 Asian Games||JPN, 2018 Asian Games|
|Back||Ryosuke Irie (53.05)||Xu Jiayu (52.60)||Ryosuke Irie (52.53)|
|Breast||Ryuya Mura (58.94)||Yan Zibei (58.86)||Yasuhiro Koseki (58.45)|
|Fly||Naoki Mizunuma (50.88)||Li Zhuhao (50.61)||Yuki Kobori (51.06)|
|Free||Katsumi Nakamura (47.04)||Yu Hexin (47.92)||Shinri Shioura (47.99)|
This year’s Olympic final was one of the fastest in history, as the US men broke the super-suited 2009 world record at 3:26.78. At the same time, runner-up Great Britain set a new European record at 3:27.51 while Italy earned bronze in a new national record of 3:29.16. Behind Italy were three more sub-3:30 relays, including the Russian Olympic Committee (3:29.22), Australia (3:29.60), and Japan. You can read more about the Tokyo 2020 men’s 400 medley relay breakdown here.