Mitch Larkin Breaks World Record in 200 Backstroke SCM (Race Video)

Mitch Larkin is quickly establishing himself as the swimmer to beat in backstroke. The 22-year-old from St Peter’s Western Swim Club put a scare into Aaron Peirsol’s long course 100 backstroke world record earlier this month in Dubai

He improved on that performance on the second night of the Hancock Prospecting Australian Short Course Championships, becoming the first swimmer to go under 1:46 in the short course 200 backstroke:


Larkin’s splits on the race were as follows:


26.89 (51.35)

27.07 (1:18.42)

27.21 (1:45.63)

Those splits suggest near perfect pacing on the race for Larkin. The previous world record was from 2009 and belonged to Arkady Vyatchanin at 1:46.11. Since that record was set, few have approached that level of performance. The fastest swim in the world last year was Radoslaw Kawecki‘s 1:47.37.

Larkin’s performance was so dominant that it put him nearly eight seconds ahead of his closest competitor. While short course swimming does not always correspond directly to long course, Larkin has proven he can race on that format as well and is looking extremely sharp with Rio coming fast on the horizon.


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5 years ago

I kind of felt this was coming, but that time is incredible, the textile best( before this swim) was 1:46.63, so he broke that by a second, and that time was held by Ryan Lochte, the short course master, so that means he basically outswam Ryan Lochte’s dolphin kicks. I personally think this will transition well into long course.
Also, speaking of dolphin kicks, Larkin seems better underwater, and looking at his times of 22.96 in the 50 and 1:45.63 in the 200, I’m scared for his 100.

5 years ago

Larkin is a SCM beast. Predict a 48.6 WR for his 100m

5 years ago

Australian Swimming – Y U NO POST THE WHOLE RACE?!

5 years ago

How do you justify uploading a 1:39 video when the entire race was 1:45. Could they really not handle uploading a few extra seconds?

5 years ago

It is disrespectful to race on Thanksgiving…..

Reply to  G3
5 years ago

There are other countries besides the US last I checked

Victor P
5 years ago

Just confirms that the 100 & 200 LC records will be broken by Rio’s closing night, if not earlier.

5 years ago

I hate converted times, but that’s a 1:35.1 SCY. Remember how ridiculous Murphy’s 1:36.7 seemed?

Reply to  austinswimmer
5 years ago

well it only did seem ridiculous for americans, nobody else. especially when you know that was about as fast as lochte was in yards, and you know lochtes scm times.

bobo gigi
5 years ago

No surprise.
Every time he’s in the water since the world championships, he swims crazy fast times in long course.
Considering he’s better in short course, no surprise he breaks world records.
I just wonder how these swimmers like Hosszu, Seebohm or Larkin can swim best times or close to best times almost each time they swim.
Same questions about someone like Gatlin on track who can run times in the 100m about 9.80 every week from May to September.
These athletes don’t know the notion of taper or peaking. They peak all year.
Maybe they use USRPT! 😆

Reply to  bobo gigi
5 years ago

Bobo, indeed no surprise.

What about Ledecky, Sjostrom and Campbell? They also swam extremely fast every time they dipped their toe in the water.

Bobo, I am with you. Ledecky, Sjostrom and Campbell need to EXPLAIN WHY THEY SWIM SO FAST!!

About Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis is a swim coach, writer and swimming enthusiast. Chris does private consulting and coaching with teams and individuals. You can find him at Chris is a 2009 Graduate from the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania. He was the first professional athletic coach …

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