Mixed Relay Will ‘Add Spice’ To Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Per Adam Peaty

Last week the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced the addition of the men’s 800 freestyle, women’s 1500 freestyle, as well as the mixed 400 medley relay to the Olympic event line-up effective as of the 202 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.

The decision was met both with excitement and criticism around the world, with the IOC believing the events’ inclusion promotes gender equality. One swimmer vocally in favor of the changes is Olympic gold medalist and world record holder Adam Peaty of Great Britain. He spoke to the BBC just prior to the IOC’s announcement, saying he was “100% in favor” of the new schedule as it would “add spice.”

Speaking from experience, as Peaty helped GBR take mixed medley relay gold at the 2015 World Championships, the breaststroking ace says, “It’s something that would make things [at the Olympics] a little bit more fun.

“Obviously it’s very serious, but it’s great to mix things up from what they’ve been for so long as it adds a little spice and they’re great to watch.”

For Peaty, the relay means another opportunity for additional hardware, as the Loughborough athlete already competes in the men’s 4x100m medley relay and individual breaststroke events. The 22-year-old also would have undoubtedly benefited had the IOC included another proposal involving the addition of 50m events for backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle. Peaty holds the 50m world record and took gold in the race in Kazan.

“Everyone loves the 50s because they’re so close and tight, so the more 50s and more events the better really,” said Peaty.

Only the 50m freestyle will be contested for Tokyo 2020, but with Peaty’s, among others, opinions being heard it’s reasonable to expect this same topic to come up for Paris or LA 2024.

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Years of Plain Suck

I guess this mixed medley relay is a done deal along with 3 on 3 basketball. Feels “gimmicky” to me. 90% of the countries will have men on the front half and women on the back half. A good deal if you’re a male breaststroker or female flyer.

If this relay had been around at Rio, Ryan Murphy, David Plummer, Kevin Cordes, Dana Vollmer, Worrel, Simone Manuel, and Abby Weitzel would all have been holding their breath during Cody Miller’s leg to make sure he didn’t jeopardize their gold medals!


Let’s not kid ourselves, they would have found a reason to put Phelps on there.

Years of Plain Suck

@Sven @TAA Interesting takes.
I wonder who will be make the relay decisions: NBC or the coaches?
If you thought relay choices were political before, just think of the possibilities when the men’s coaches are lobbying for their swimmers against the women’s coaches (and vice versa). And what makes for better TV: Phelps or “the Mom” Vollmer? The “outspoken Ruskie-slaying” Lily King or the potential “triple dolphin-kick DQ Guy” Miller? Hard to find a scenario to put Adrian on it or take Manuel off it.

I think I would have put Jack Conger on the 100 fly leg just for the hell of it (and cosmic justice).


well if the hard working lilly king goes sub 1:05 you could make an argument for putting her on this relay. Also if Worrell can’t go sub 57 and Shields goes 51.0 you can see there is a slight time pick from this combination.

Coach John

FYI – 2 out of the top 8 countries in heats went with an order other than M – M – F – F at the 2015 WC’s in Kazan (CDN and ITL) and in finals 2 out of 8 as well (ITL and RUS) so not quite 90% (75% technically). just some stats… I know they arent the best indicator but the trend is for a medal contending country to put the men on the front half and women on the back half (probably to stay ahead of the wave and because the difference in times between the two sexes is greatest on BR)


So basically it’s gonna go: M, M, F, F.

Captain Awesome

It won’t on the British or Russian relays, and possibly the Australian.

Coach John

Italy and possibly Canada in heats my guess


I haven’t analyzed specific national team lineups yet, but from the 2016 Olympic finals, the average male backstroker and breaststroker, were around six seconds faster than their female counterparts, compared to only 4 seconds or so in the fly and free. Of course there will be exceptions.


4 is too little.

Let´s make it on Average for a competitive relay at least
Back Men: 53 Mid-high, Back Women: 59 mid-high, about 6 seconds
Breast Men: 59 mid-high, women: 1:06 mid-high, about 7 seconds
Fly Men: 52 flat, women: 57 mid: 5,5 seconds
Free Men: 48 low, women: 53 mid-high: 5,5 seconds

So probably a country would go M, M, F, F or maybe it would be F, M, F, M or F, M, M, F.. so a Men on Breast would be in case only if you have a 1:00 high 1:01 Men..


They were waiting till after Phelps retired to add the event, just in case he won 9 gold medals.


See what you’re going for, but I don’t think they would have swam MP. Dressel for one could probably power a 50 fly a quarter to half a second faster than MP. Plus shields.


Why am I thinking its a 4×50 relay? Never mind

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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