Kathleen Dawson Snaps Scottish Record in 100 Back, Passes Franklin All-Time


Going out hard and coming home well, Scottish backstroker Kathleen Dawson cracked a huge swim to win the women’s 100 back tonight in London. Coming into the meet with a lifetime best and Scottish record of 58.65, Dawson tonight posted a 58.24, taking almost a half-second off of that time.

Dawson looked very good, and she’s only building momentum after going three-for-three with Scottish records in the three backstroke events in March. She’s now just off of the British record, a 58.12 done in 2009 by Gemma Spofforth, which was a World Record at the time. Her time is also the best European swim ever done in a textile suit.


  • 28.25
  • 29.99

After pushing the pace early, Dawson was still able to come home well, just under 30 seconds on the second 50.

Dawson was previously ranked #14 all-time with her big swim in March, and she leaps up to #8 now. Her time just surpasses American great Missy Franklin‘s 58.33, which is the time she hit to win the gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics, while Dawson’s now just over a tenth away from a top-five ranking all-time.


  1. Regan Smith (USA) – 57.57
  2. Kaylee McKeown (AUS) – 57.93
  3. Kathleen Baker (USA) – 58.00
  4. Kylie Masse (CAN) – 58.10
  5. Gemma Spofforth (GBR) – 58.12
  6. Anastasia Fesikova (RUS) – 58.18
  7. Emily Seebohm (AUS) – 58.23
  8. Kathleen Dawson (GBR) – 58.24
  9. Missy Franklin (USA) – 58.33
  10. Katinka Hosszu (HUN) – 58.45

As if the women’s 100 backstroke field wasn’t crowded enough, Dawson’s progression makes her a much more threatening medal contender.

This season, she’s one of just three women under 59 seconds. Her time today moves her closer to the World #1 time, a 57.93 done by Australian teen phenom Kaylee McKeown, but she’ll stay put at #2 for now.

2020-2021 LCM Women 100 Back

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1 year ago

Ngl I’ve never even heard her name that’s crazy

1 year ago

Damn it’s really about to take sub-58 to medal in Tokyo 🤯

Last edited 1 year ago by swimfast
Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  swimfast
1 year ago

Pretty much, yeah

1 year ago

Great swim. Seebohm’s Olympic heat hangs on to the pool record by 0.01s!

1 year ago

How fast time flies. Just 8 years passed and Missy Franklin is already an ancient history. Who cares if her result has been passed.

Mr Piano
Reply to  Yozhik
1 year ago

Yeah? Well it feels like you’ve been commenting here for about 8 years even though it’s only been like 2 or 3

Reply to  Mr Piano
1 year ago

Yep, it was the swimvortex.com before. What’s your point.
Missy Franklin’s story was supernova explosion. For three years BUM!!!! And then back in dark. 5 years is a new generation in swimming and they are bright.

Last edited 1 year ago by Yozhik
Fax Only
Reply to  Yozhik
1 year ago

Have to admit, this is a great take.

Missy had an incredible run but IMO due to her wonderful personality (no sarcasm, she’s a genuinely great human) her career is WAY overrated. Plenty of women have accomplished much more than she ever did and don’t get close to the same love, which is confusing to me.

Again, taking nothing away from the person/athlete. More of a shot at the Missy Mega Fans exaggerate her career achievements

Reply to  Fax Only
1 year ago

No question she was a media darling but please offer some evidence— who are the plenty of women who have accomplished much more than she ever did. List the plenty names.

Fax Only
1 year ago

Sorry I misspoke and got excited. Not many have done much more. But MANY women who have done just about as much if not a bit more. And the majority of these women have just as many individual Olympic medals as Missy.

Again, not taking “much” away from Missy. She’s great. But in my eyes her career wasn’t much different than any of the women listed below. But the amount of attention she receives relative to what she actually accomplished….you’d think she had a career like Natalie Coughlin, who for whatever reason isn’t celebrated nearly as much but was the first woman in history to be sub 60/59 in the 100 back.

Simone Manuel
Natalie Coughlin
… Read more »

Reply to  Fax Only
1 year ago

This is interesting and I agree that it’s important to recognize that Missy’s mega-profile is boosted by her personality and look and citizenship, which fulfills the “girl next door” archetype that US media loves to promote. On the flip side, I think you also have to look carefully at the fact that she did have historic accomplishments, esp being the first woman to win 6 gold medals in a single world champs (and before the unnecessary addition of mixed relays). The issue is she didn’t have the longevity, due to her injury. Some of those names above didn’t have the level of versatility and achievement in both Olympics and Worlds. Some of them absolutely, I agree w you. I think… Read more »

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Mr Piano
1 year ago

Is it possible that Yozhik may be a cousin to Oscar the Grouch?

Reply to  Coach Mike 1952
1 year ago

Whatever 1952 means in your name it indicates that you are in past with all your memories, feelings, preferences and priorities.
Ask any child today who Oscar the Grouch is and see what the answer would be. Same story with Missy Franklin. Move on my dear “1952” 😀

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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