Michael Andrew Analyzes World Championships With His Eyes on 200 IM For Paris

SwimSwam caught up with Olympic champion Michael Andrew at SPIRE Academy in Geneva, Ohio where he guest hosted a swim camp.  Coming off of the 2022 World Championship in Budapest where he won bronze in the 50 butterfly and 50 breaststroke, and a silver in the 50 freestyle, Michael unpacks what he liked and didn’t like.

Michael’s competing at the Phillips 66 U.S. Summer Nationals in Irvine, CA, but only in 100 breast and 50 free.  Keep your expectations in check. He’s been on a break.  He’ll race in Irvine at Nationals, then surf for awhile, and he says he’ll use Duel in the Pool as springboard into fall training.

Looking ahead to Paris, Michael said it’s crazy how close it is, but he feels like he has time to ramp up.  Michael notes this recent break from the pool is the “one” break before the push to Paris, and he’s focused not only on the 50 and 100s, but the 200 IM, adding with a smile that he’s not focused on the 150 IM.

PREDICTION GAME!

I wasn’t going to play the game in this video, but since Michael brought up the 200 IM, noting he’s not focused on the 150 IM, I’m going out on a limb. I’m predicting he drops a 1:53.9 at 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials. I think MA’s got this swim inside of him. It’s just waiting to burst out if he can put together the perfect race.  1:53.9 would, of course, be a world record, but would it be enough to win in Paris? Right now, it appears Michael Andrew, Leon Marchand and Carson Foster could all be 1:54 in Paris.   Help me here. What is the best case scenario for a lights out 200 IM Olympic final in Paris? What’s the worst case scenario?  Let me know!

200 IM PBs:

  • Michael Andrew – 1:55.26 – 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials
  • Leon Marchand – 1:55.22 – 2022 World Champs
  • Caron Foster – 1:55.71 – 2022 World Champs

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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.

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Alex Wilson
1 month ago

With Leon, Chase, and Jay all training at ASU with Bob Bowman, I am looking forward to a very interesting 400 IM at the intersquad meet in September as pro group swimmers have swan in intersquad meet in the past. Imagine 3 of the 4 current top 400 IMers in the same pool at the same time! It would be “Icing on the Cake” if the meet were LCM format! With MP the world record holder on deck as the announcer!

Someone's definitely going 1:53.9
2 months ago

So some people are saying MA needs a new coach… That’s a really delicate decision that has to include factors beyond just training methodology. Is his current training atmosphere, which emerges out of a very close relationship with his family, something that centers, motivates, and inspires him? Or is he in a place where a change of environment, having the freedom to step into something wholly new, would be beneficial? Some people might say; “I need to go out on my own to really settle into myself”. And others may say; “It’s this very environment and my interaction with familiar faces that centers and grounds me”. For others still, it may be about finding a balance between the two. And… Read more »

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
2 months ago

Warning!

Beware of charlatans peddling Michael Andrew snake oil!

This message is approved by the Eddie Reese fan club.

P.S. Carson Foster is the man, Eddie Reese has the plan.

thezwimmer
2 months ago

Watching MA’s IM races is similar to watching Thiago Pereira of Brazil – world class through 150 meters, but has a weak freestyle and gets caught in the end. Obviously not as technically inefficient as MA on the closing split, but he was generally 29+ on his freestyle legs. The main difference IMO is the competitors which each man is racing. Pereira swam in the age of Phelps and Lochte era, but most everyone else was going 1:56-1:58 around them, so not as many racers pass him on the last leg. The IM field is (finally) getting stronger, where we are seeing more 1:55s and 1:56s, so when MA goes 1:57 at the Olympics, it looks relatively worse.

I don’t… Read more »

anonymous
Reply to  thezwimmer
2 months ago

MA swam 1:55.2 IM fly 23.9, back 29.1, breast 32.2 free 29.9
Thiago swam 1:55.5 IM fly 24.83, back 28.5, breast 33.4, free 28.7

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  anonymous
2 months ago

MA swam 1:57.31 in the final of the men’s 200 meter individual medley at the Tokyo 2021 Olympics.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  thezwimmer
2 months ago

Uhh people definitely noticed Pereira dying in Rio, lol.

The Original Tim
2 months ago

I’m not sure about a 1:53.9, but I definitely think he has what it takes to get into the low 1:54 range.

Compared to his likely domestic and international competition for ’24, he’s faster in each stroke, looking at them individually, than anyone he’s likely to face. We know he can transfer that speed into the first three legs of the IM, so it *should* only take some dedicated closing work over the next two years to bridge that gap for his free leg.

Taking myself as an example, while I’m a masters swimmer closing in on 40 and nowhere even remotely close to being in the same zip code as MA or any elite athlete, I spent the ’18-’19… Read more »

Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
2 months ago

I don’t think people would say “he can break the world record, he only needs to be 1.69 seconds quicker” for any given event so to even get down to 29 flat is a massive task

Here Comes Lezak
Reply to  Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
2 months ago

Well he’s been 29.4 before so it’s not out of the realm of possibility. He just needs to fix his breathing and do a little more steady state aerobic

Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
Reply to  Here Comes Lezak
2 months ago

But was that 29.4 after the previous 150 meters at the intensity of a major international meet performance? I doubt it, this is why it’s so stupid and arrogant to presume Andrew can get the world record or even a medal in the 2IM

Time For Barta To Go
Reply to  Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
2 months ago

The massive task is the training modification that may be necessary for MA to finish that 2IM in world record pace. While USRPT has proven mostly successful thus far for him (emphasis intended), the amount of progressive failure interval, mVO2, “pace work at deficit” improving that last split requires might not be something he is willing to try.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  The Original Tim
2 months ago

Carson Foster is the man, Eddie Reese has the plan.

Book it!

Peaty55Paris
2 months ago

No way. Carson will hopefully get gold 2 IM, Marchand WR 4IM before or during Paris. MA well under WR line, fades to 5th place in finals. A 1:53 isn’t built by doing pace 50’s, it’s built by years and years of specific training-Phelps, Lochte. Idk unless he gets another lung on the end of the 150 he won’t get gold.

Owlmando
Reply to  Peaty55Paris
2 months ago

Neither lochte or phelps ever had the raw speed in breast that MA has, maybe MA even has faster raw speed in some of the other strokes

Doesnt have to be built the same way every time, hes got different tools in his kit

Susan
2 months ago

I don’t think MA can change his training enough to come home that last 50.
I see him at 1.54 high..Marchand at 1.53 low, and Foster at 1.53 high.. MA is a good frontrunner, if in the lead, his strokes are more fluid..head to head, he tends to spin his wheels, and Foster will be out with him..training alone has to be tough! How do you learn to control the adrenaline in a close race, when you never practice it?

Ragnar
2 months ago

More interested in Simone and Caelebs current status.

Go Kamminga Go
Reply to  Ragnar
2 months ago

Swim community wants swimming to be acknowledged and as popular other pro sports, and yet, top swimmers are behaving like amateur athletes.

Susan
Reply to  Go Kamminga Go
2 months ago

I would agree, but why the ” mental illness” epidemic amongst swimmers? Is it because it is an individual sport vs team? Why can’t our athletes handle the pressure? A lot of questions, with no definitive answers.

ytho
Reply to  Susan
2 months ago

I think it mainly comes down to two things. One being training, very though training sessions, 10+ times a week, long and taxing workouts etc. Not saying this is not the case for other sports, but swimming is really up there.
Secondly, the nature of competing: usually max 1-2 peak competitions per year, even less for some athletes. You work very hard for months and everything comes down to 1-2 mins. Should be tough to handle it mentally, especially if you have a lot of eyes on you.

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Susan
2 months ago

It’s always been there. Just too much stigma associated with it. By his own admission, Phelps was mentally ill throughout his career. He just had to come out about it because of the repeat DUI’s and the marketability of a redemption story pre-2016 Olympics. Not saying he might not have discussed it post career, but those two DUIs and the branding for the 2016 Olympics were key motivators.

College Swimmer
Reply to  Susan
2 months ago

It is overtraining and always has been, training in the sport of swimming will have an overhaul in the next few year i predict. No other sport trains like swimmers do and beating yourself to exhaustion everyday is simply not the most effective way to train.

Mr Piano
Reply to  Go Kamminga Go
2 months ago

Swimming will never be more popular than it was under Phelps. Time we realize that imo. And Dressel not giving the reasons as to why he dropped out and Simone not giving her training status is definitely not holding us back

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Mr Piano
2 months ago

Swimming was pretty damn popular in yester-year. Spitz and others. Swimming won six Sullivan Awards between 1964 (Schollander) and 1978 (Tracy Caulkins). There have been only 5 since, and only the 2003 one from Phelps. Everyone knew who Debbie Meyer, John Kinsella, John Nabor, Tim Shaw, etc were. They were covers of Sports Illustrated. It’s not popularity, it’s excellence, that’s declined. Yeah, yeah, times are better, specialization, whatever, but the common man looked at those people as the very best of athletes and just beasts of stamina.

Taa
Reply to  Mr Piano
2 months ago

Next man(or women) up as they say. USA just won 40 plus medals so we have plenty of swimmers to follow. Brooks Curry I think can be the future.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Mr Piano
2 months ago

With regard to Simone Manuel, the women’s 4 x 100 meter freestyle relay could use an in form Simone Manuel.

Robbos
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
2 months ago

Yep silver medal well within reach for the US with an inform Manuel.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Robbos
2 months ago

Mallory Comerford has regressed since 2017. Simone Manuel has regressed since 2019.
Abbey Weitzeil has regressed since 2021. The female contingent of USA’s 100 meter freestyle sprinting has hit rock bottom.

advance swimming everywhere
Reply to  Mr Piano
2 months ago

yh barely anyone know Dressel no offense to him. Swimming peaked between 2008-2016. It’s weird how people on this site act like it’s still at its height of popularity

Troyy
Reply to  advance swimming everywhere
2 months ago

In the US it peaked during that time but I think you’ll find popularity peaked at different times in different countries.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Ragnar
2 months ago

I asked a couple sports-industry friends of mine if they could come up with a similar comp to Dressel just sorta dipping out in the middle of a major competition, nothing yet.

Tho the only examples my buddy could think of where Vontae Davis, who abruptly retired during an NFL game, and Andrew Luck, who retired right before the season started.

So now I’m paranoid Dressel is like, done done.

Last edited 2 months ago by Steve Nolan
Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
Reply to  Steve Nolan
2 months ago

I hope he is, to bring the sport into disrepute like that shows he has absolutely no respect for the sport of swimming, he won’t be missed

Last edited 2 months ago by Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
Bobthebuilderrocks
Reply to  Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
2 months ago

I’d like some of the KoolAid you’re having, please.

Walter
Reply to  Jacob Whittle 46.90 in Paris
2 months ago

Disrepute? How? None of us have any idea what is going on and we may never find out. That’s ok. Would you rather he was Kim Kardashian? Enough of that nonsense. Get on with your life. Whatever he does doesn’t affect yours in any way.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
2 months ago

Ya I don’t think he’d hang it up like this either, but sorta the longer we don’t hear much / the comps my dumb friends thought of, I just start thinking of worst-possible scenarios. (Unlikely ones, to be sure.)

Taa
Reply to  Steve Nolan
2 months ago

Come on Steve your friends aren’t trying very hard. How about Osaka in womens tennis? NFL it happens often didn’t some guy leave a game and literally retire on the spot last year? Okay he wasn’t a superstar but still.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Taa
2 months ago

I mentioned Vontae Davis in my comment. (Unless there was another midgame NFL retirement, lol. He was a former pro bowler, too.)

But even with Osaka, there was an immediate explanation.

Last edited 2 months ago by Steve Nolan
Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Steve Nolan
2 months ago

Andrew Luck took a physical beating. In addition, the public will never know how many concussions Andrew Luck suffered.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
2 months ago

Oh no, I’m not saying it wasn’t warranted for Luck to retire, just that it was a biggole surprise.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
2 months ago

This is comforting, to me. Still a weird situation, but I like the break explanation.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Steve Nolan
2 months ago

THOUGHT #1: If Caeleb had MA’s poise, personality, “aw-shucks” friendliness, and candor, he would have been America’s “Golden Boy” several times over.

THOUGHT #2: I think CD is plainly tired from having to carry American men’s swimming on his back since 2017.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
2 months ago

Re – 1: Eh, would he? MA’s got those homeschool kid vibes. (And “our body” weirds people out.) And idk I guess I never noticed much of a…deficiency? in Dressel’s personality. He did start doing those YouTube videos ripping himself, basically. That’s sorta a bit more open than most swimmers this side of Cody Miller.

Re – 2:
comment image

Last edited 2 months ago by Steve Nolan
Taa
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
2 months ago

The longevity of a swimmer at the very very top is pretty short. A couple years and even from season to season some will struggle to match the prior year’s performance. Caeleb rose up in 2017 and its now 2022. He had a good run.

Caeleb stayed true to who he was and he should be admired for that and for not selling out.

Taa
Reply to  Ragnar
2 months ago

Time to let go of Simone. Caeleb give him some time.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Taa
2 months ago

Simone Manuel has been MIA for nearly a year.

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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