LIVEBARN Race of The Week: Sarah Sjostrom Battles Back to Earn 50 Butterfly Triple Crown

If there’s one thing Sarah Sjostrom knows how to do, it’s get her hands on the wall first.

On the penultimate night of the 2023 World Cup series in Budapest, Hungary, the 30-year-old Swede completed her second Triple Crown of the event by winning the 50 butterfly.

But for the majority of the race, it looked like the Triple Crown was not meant to be.

Courtesy: SportMedia (via Twitter) 

Zhang Yufei led for the majority of the race and seemed to still have an edge on the charging Sjostrom with just five meters to go. But at the wall, it was Sjostrom who came out on top, beating out Zhang for the win by just two-hundredths.

Sjostrom clocked 25.21, the slowest of her three 50 fly wins on this series. Zhang followed in 25.23, with Sjostrom’s fellow Swede Sara Junevik taking third.

After the race, Sjostrom said, “I have done the 50 fly a million times now, and I know that a lot of things can go wrong.  But I know that even when I have a pretty bad race, I know that I can still swim fast.  I try to have that in my mind when swimming the 50 fly the same as the 50 free.”

My lowest level is still pretty high,” she continued. “I have swum this race so many times and I know how to win the race. I had a very very very bad start so I was trying to relax. I was trying to catch her [Zhang] and I was just seeing what I could do, and catch her at the end.”

In Athens, Sjostrom set a new World Cup record of 24.97. This was her second Triple Crown on the 2023 circuit, as she was crowned in the 50 freestyle on Day 1.



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5 months ago

“My lowest level is still pretty high,” such an understatement. The top 20 fastest swims are all hers. She’s been 24.4 and no one else has been under 25. When was the last time she lost a 50 fly? 2011 worlds?

I’d love for her to swim butterfly in a 50m free heat some time just as a big flex

Last edited 5 months ago by Andy
Hooked on Chlorine
5 months ago

Zhang looked as if she had that race won, yet Sjostrom still managed to out touch her in the final lunge for the wall. Like McKeown, Sjostrom just knows how to win.

5 months ago

It would be nice to be so good at an event that you can make a massive mistake and still win, over the second best performer of all time no less

About Sophie Kaufman

Sophie Kaufman

Sophie grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, which means yes, she does root for the Bruins, but try not to hold that against her. At 9, she joined her local club team because her best friend convinced her it would be fun. Shoulder surgery ended her competitive swimming days long ago, …

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