Michael Andrew Becomes First Swimmer to Medal in 3 50s at a Single World Champs

by Spencer Penland 22

June 24th, 2022 International, News



  • World Record: 20.91, Cesar Cielo (BRA) – 2009 Brazilian Championships
  • Championship Record: 21.04, Caeleb Dressel (USA) – 2019 World Championships
  • 2021 Olympic Champion: Caeleb Dressel (USA) – 21.07
  • 2019 World Champion: Caeleb Dressel (USA) – 21.04
  1. Ben Proud (GBR), 21.32
  2. Michael Andrew (USA), 21.41
  3. Maxime Grousset (FRA), 21.57
  4. Szebasztian Szabo (HUN), 21.60
  5. Josh Liendo (CAN), 21.61
  6. Lorenzo Zazzeri (ITA), 21.81
  7. Lewis Burras (GBR), 21.83
  8. Kristian Gkolomeev (GRE), 21.89

American sprint star Michael Andrew made history tonight, becoming the first swimmer in history to win medals in 3 50s at a single World Championships. He pulled off the hat trick thanks to a phenomenal effort in the men’s 50 free final tonight, wherein he posted a new personal best of 21.41 for Silver. The performance also marks Andrew’s first career World Champs medal in the 50 free.

We’ve long suspected that Andrew could be a swimmer who could compete in, and even medal, in all 4 50s at the World Championships. In fact, Andrew became the first swimmer in history to make finals in all 4 50s at World Championship, doing so at the 2019 LC Worlds in Gwangju. He ultimately failed to medal in any of the races in 2019 however.

Lately, he’s been forgoing the 50 back in favor of other events, but his personal best of 24.39 in the LCM 50 back would have put him 3rd in tonight’s semifinals of the event. Andrew didn’t compete in the 50 back, however, instead he was also in the final of the 100 fly tonight, where he swam a solid 51.11 for a 4th place finish, just 0.31 seconds off his career best.

His 50 free performance tonight marks Andrew’s 4th medal of these World Championships. Here is a summary of his performance thus far:

  • GOLD – Mixed 4×100 Medley Relay (50.69 fly split on the prelims relay)
  • SILVER – Men’s 50 Free (21.41)
  • BRONZE – Men’s 50 Fly (22.79)
  • BRONZE – Men’s 50 Breast (26.72)

It’s interesting that Andrew is finally getting on the World Champs podium this year, after he’s shifted his training focus somewhat beyond just pure sprinting in the last few years. Andrew has made phenomenal gains in the LCM 100s and especially the 200 IM, which he has become a world class competitor in. Nonetheless, his speed hasn’t suffered even slightly. In fact, he’s swum new career bests in the LCM 50 free, fly, and breast this year alone, after swimming personal bests in the 100 breast, 200 breast, 100 fly, and 200 IM last year.

Moreover, Andrew’s new personal best in the 50 free tonight moves him up the all-time rankings in the event. Andrew now sits at 19th all-time in the world, and he’s the #5 American in history.

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7 months ago

It’s worth mentioning that this feat would have still happened with Dressel in the mix!

7 months ago

So interesting because he won the 50 back at juniors worlds, right? 4 for 4 might happen one day

7 months ago

(yawn) come back when all three are golds.

or even one of them is.

Don't understand the hype
7 months ago

Headline should read, “How could a swimmer earns 3 Golds in age group events not ever win an individual Olympic medal of any color”?

Fobby Binke
7 months ago

Like I said before, Andrew should focus on 50s, he’ll do fantastic.

Reply to  Fobby Binke
7 months ago

He was 4th at Worlds in the 100 fly…that’s pretty fantastic.

Fobby Binke
Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago


Wake me up when Andrew won LCM worlds/Olympics individual medal in anything longer than 50.

Last edited 7 months ago by Fobby Binke
7 months ago

I believe MA said in an interview a couple years ago that a goal of his is to be the fastest in the world in all 4 strokes at the 50. Props to him for getting closer and closer to that goal each year. Progress should be celebrated.

7 months ago

His 50 Back pb (from 2019) is :24.39, which would be tied for Bronze medal position going into tomorrow’s final.

MA enjoyer
7 months ago

If only the 50 im existed

Reply to  MA enjoyer
7 months ago

He won a world championship in the 100 i.m. already