Michael Andrew’s 200IM: Who Else Has Gone Out Under WR Pace But Missed it?

2021 U.S. OLYMPIC SWIMMING TRIALS

Michael Andrew has been under World Record pace for three-fourths of the 200 IM twice now at the 2021 U.S.Olympic Trials Wave II. But his closing speed on the freestyle left him 1.26 seconds off the record in the semifinals Thursday night.

He took out the race in 23.9. It is rare to break 24.0 on the butterfly leg; Ryan Lochte‘s World Record swim at the 2011 World Championships started off with a 24.89. Andrew also beat Lochte’s breaststroke split by .82. Their backstroke splits are not too far off, with Lochte ahead by.60. 

The biggest difference between their race splits? Lochte closed the race in under 28 seconds, at 27.49.  Andrew finished in 29.96.

Michael Andrew 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials Splits Comparison

MICHAEL ANDREW – 2021 US OLYMPIC TRIALS SEMI-FINALS MICHAEL ANDREW – 2021 US OLYMPIC TRIALS PRELIMS RYAN LOCHTE – 2011 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS (CURRENT WR)
1st 50 23.9 24.13 24.89
2nd 50 29.19 29.52 28.59
3rd 50 32.21 32.76 33.03
4th 50 29.96 29.84 27.49
Final Time 1:55.26 1:56.25 1:54.00

Watch Lochte’s World Record-setting approach here:

Ryan Lochte – 2011 World Championships

The most memorable case where someone went out ahead of the World Record pace but missed it in recent history was the men’s 200 IM final at the 2016 Olympic Games. Brazil’s Thiago Pereira was first at the 50-meter mark, ahead of gold medalist Michael Phelps. He remained in medal contention and below Lochte’s World Record pace through the 100-meter mark.

Pereira was still challenging World Record pace until he fell off on the breaststroke and freestyle. He split a 30.65 on the 50 freestyle compared to the World Record split of 27.49. You can watch the race video here.

Thiago Periera 2016 Olympics Splits Comparison

Thiago Pereira (2016 Olympics Final) Michael Phelps (2016 Olympics Final Champion) Ryan Lochte– 2011 World Championships (current WR)
1st 50 24.74 24.91 24.89
2nd 50 28.71 28.54 28.59
3rd 50 33.92 33.51 33.03
4th 50 30.65 27.7 27.49
Final Time 1:58.02 1:54.66 1:54.00

 

Andrew, unlike Pereira, had a solid breaststroke split that was .8 faster than Lochte’s World Record pace. Andrew will race the event in the finals tonight, which start at 8 pm U.S. Central Time.

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Togger
4 months ago

MA definitely on WR watch tonight. Nervy evening for Govorov.

TheloniusPunk
Reply to  Togger
4 months ago

lol

ERVINFORTHEWIN
Reply to  Togger
4 months ago

if he does not get his free corrected , no chance .

maybe?
Reply to  ERVINFORTHEWIN
4 months ago

The joke went right over your head

Beach bum jason
4 months ago

Imagine what the WR record would have been in the 2011 race or what the WR would have been in 200 IM 400 IM 200m free 100m fly and 200 meter fly if Phelps fully trained 09-2012 🙁

WhoGoesHere
Reply to  Beach bum jason
4 months ago

Of the events you list, MP only did a best time in the 200 IM in a non tech suit year. His 400 IM, 200 FR, and both flys were all from 08-09 where he, and most everyone else, got the advantage of suits that soon were no longer permitted. I’d say he made the most of his peak years, and doubt any records from his 08-09 could have been any faster.

G L
Reply to  Beach bum jason
3 months ago

and , if you had wings you could fly ….no harm in dreaming…..

ACC fan
4 months ago

Do you think if he went out 1 second slower in the fly he could come back 2 seconds faster on the free?

thezwimmer
Reply to  ACC fan
4 months ago

Don’t know about that. I think Phelps put it best when he said that since MA trains at top speed all the time, he can’t maintain his stroke when he is fatigued like at the end of an IM. MA’s only move is to continue to swim like he does for now and work on it for the future.

sven
Reply to  thezwimmer
4 months ago

I think Phelps is making a lot of assumptions and not actually doing any research. The Andrews have been talking about race pace for years now, not talking about training at top speed all the time.

Anyone will fall apart If they swim their race like MA, I don’t care how their conditioning is or how many yards their college coach made them do. It’s strategy and technique, not the fact that he doesn’t train for the 400.

Togger
Reply to  ACC fan
4 months ago

27 high is a quick split, when Lochte did that 27 mid he was in 1.44 200 free shape.

Whilst it’s easy to joke about MA’s last 50, we should remember Lochte and Phelps were world class 200 freestylers and 400 IMers, just backing off the fly won’t give MA a world class mid distance freestyle stroke or Lochte/Phelps endurance, he’s making the time where he best can (using that sprinters easy speed on the fly and then going hard on the breastroke).

sven
Reply to  Togger
4 months ago

Drop-dead sprinter here. My best 200 times also involved easy speed on the front end. Really working the start and then riding that momentum through the first 50 or so and being with the field but very fresh for a push during the middle 100… What MA does is not easy speed.

So to ACC Fan’s question, I say yes, backing off the fly would result in a net drop if he can slow down without psyching himself out.

Jack
Reply to  ACC fan
4 months ago

No. He struggles with efficient breathing on the free leg, and he won’t go 27 until he fixes it. He’s currently burning the first 150 to cover the weakness, and it’s working well. But his path to 1:54 low (or, indeed, 1:53) lies at the end of a process of improving his breathing technique in free. He can do it, but in the immediate term of how to split the race, he’s probably doing what he needs to be doing given his skill set as it stands.

BillyBob
Reply to  Jack
4 months ago

A week ago the people who made these comments were saying that he won’t be able to get well into the 155 range unless he starts changing up his approach. Now that he’s 155.2 you are saying he won’t be able to make it to low 154 unless he changes his approach. At what point will you stop moving the goalposts?

Blackflag82
Reply to  BillyBob
4 months ago

Not moving the goalposts, but legitimately asking…where does he find another second without cleaning up his free? I see half a second tops, but even with that I suspect his free slips at least 2-3 tenths and he’s around 154.9-155.0. both of those are amazing times, but let’s recognize them as just that rather than hyping about how MA is going to shave 1.5 seconds off his first 150 of the event and go 153.x (as many have been saying)…the time’s not there.

Coach
Reply to  BillyBob
4 months ago

It’s swimming.
The faster you get, the faster the goal is.
Even if he swims 1:53.99 he’ll still want to go faster so will have to change something

Jack
Reply to  BillyBob
4 months ago

Ok. But I never said that. I thought 1:55 low to 1:54 high was a reasonable landing place for him. The reason I think he’s near the peak of where his current skill set can take him is that he has a pretty clearly identifiable weakness. Phelps was stuck on 1:55-1:56 while he had one of the weaker breast legs in the field. He turned his breast into a strength, and boom: 1:54 low. Lochte would either go out too fast on fly trying to keep up with Michael or lay on the gas on breast trying to put Michael away. For years he refused to split his own race, and got stuck on 1:55-1:56. Cleaned up that splitting (and… Read more »

BWPolo
Reply to  BillyBob
4 months ago

2 years ago everyone commented that he ran out of steam at the end of his 100 events… In 2024 they’ll wonder why his 400IM isn’t at world record every swim.

sven
Reply to  Jack
4 months ago

Technique and strategy is my diagnosis. No one else uses 50 technique at the end of an IM (partially for breathing, as you say), and there’s a reason for that.

Xman
Reply to  ACC fan
4 months ago

No, if anything he should push the whole first 100 faster.

Sun Yangs Hammer
4 months ago

Phelps 2015 Nats was also out ahead at the 150

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
Reply to  Sun Yangs Hammer
4 months ago

My guess is that this article is excluding Phelps/Lochte? Because they’ve done so many 1:54 mid/lows that at least some of them are bound to be under WR pace at the 100 or 150 lol.

thezwimmer
4 months ago

Was the first recorded swim with a 50 split under 24?

Observer
4 months ago

I’m just going to say this. In the kindest way possible. I don’t think he will break it tonight. I could be way wrong. But here is the thing. He was absolutely gased on that last 50. He was clearly deeply into the acidosis point of no return. If he eases up even a little bit, he’s going to be slower than world record speed. You see stories of this or that swimmer “scaring world record line” but not able to pull it off.

I.e. Kevin Cordes
https://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/kevin-cordes-gives-the-world-record-a-scare-in-200-breast-at-nationals/

Another memory I have is of Michael andrews kicking the crap out of Dressel at Nationals and making the national team but… Read more »

Observer
Reply to  Observer
4 months ago

Just following up.

Even though I was right, I’m still a supporter of him.

Dee
4 months ago

Cseh was out faster in Beijing, but that was before the WR was set, so not sure if we’re counting it

Last edited 4 months ago by Dee
Robbos
4 months ago

He’s swimming 1.55.25, which is fastest in the world, it’s working why change it.

Eric the Eel > Michael Phelps
Reply to  Robbos
4 months ago

It’s encouraging yeah , and he still has room to improve by working on that free leg which is great