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
- SwimSwam Event Previews
- Entry Lists
- Live Results
- Day 3 Finals Heat Sheet
Kaylee McKeown has just won Australia’s first-ever Olympic gold medal in the women’s 100 backstroke with a 57.47 Olympic record. McKeown got within 0.02 seconds of her own 57.45 world record from earlier this year at Australian Trials. McKeown now holds the 2 fastest swims in the history event, along with 5 of the top 10 performances in history.
All-time Performances In The Women’s 100 Backstroke
- Kaylee McKeown – 57.45 (2021)
- Kaylee McKeown – 57.47 (2021)
- Regan Smith – 57.57 (2019)
- Kaylee McKeown – 57.63 (2021)
- Kylie Masse – 57.70 (2021)
- Kylie Masse – 57.72 (2021)
- Regan Smith – 57.86 (2021)
- Kaylee McKeown – 57.88 (2021)
- Regan Smith – 57.92 (2021)
- Kaylee McKeown – 57.93 (2020)
You’ll note that the only other women who appear with the top 10 are silver and bronze medalists Kylie Masse of Canada and Regan Smith of the United States. Both Masse and Smith are former world record holders in the event, having hit a 58.10 in 2017 and a 57.57 in 2019.
This swim is the 5th Olympic record to have fallen at Tokyo 2020, courtesy of those same 3 women. Kylie Masse was the first woman to do so, notching a 58.17 during prelims to take out Emily Seebohm‘s 58.23 mark from 2012. A heat later, Regan Smith brought it down to a 57.96, and Kaylee McKeown made it 3-for-3 with a 57.88 to wrap up prelims.
During the semi-finals, Regan Smith delivered the top time and a new Olympic record of 57.86 to advance first into semis. Her 3rd and final 100 backstroke swim at the Games brought with it one more Olympic record of 57.47.
Not only is this a historic swim for McKeown heat-wise, but it also marks the first time that a woman from her nation has topped the Olympic podium in the event. Australia’s first podium finish in the event was in 1932 when Bonnie Mealing took silver in Los Angles and 8 years later Judy-Joy Davies earned bronze. It wasn’t until 2012 when Australia reach the women’s 100 back podium again as Emily Seebohm delivered a silver medal swim in London.
Seebohm was also present in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic final and hit a 58.45 for 5th place, behind podium finishers McKeown, Masse, and Smith, along with 4th place finisher Rhyan White. Kathleen Dawson of Great Britain finished 6th in a 58.70 while Kira Toussaint (59.11) and Anastasia Gorbenko (59.53) rounded out the heat.