Nathan Adrian Scratches 50 Free on Final Day of 2018 Pan Pacs


In his last chance to qualify for an individual swim at the 2019 World Championships, 29-year old American captain Nathan Adrian declared a false start in prelims off the 50 free.

On Sunday morning, starting the final day of the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships, Adrian opted to not swim the race. The prelims session was a slow one, with only American teen Michael Andrew going sub-22 in 21.83 (he was the fastest qualifier for finals by .34 seconds, ahead of another American, Caeleb Dressel).

Adrian was the 2010 Pan Pac Champion in both the 50 and 100 freestyles, and at the 2014 edition placed 2nd in the 100 and 3rd in the 50 free. Earlier this year, a 3-year undefeated streak at the Pro Swim Series in the 100 free ended. His 8-year USA Swimming National title streak in the 100 free also came to an end.

But Adrian has still shown some juice in that 100 free this week. His 47.27 to anchor the 400 free relay on Saturday was the fastest on the American team by almost half-a-second, and was the second-fastest in the field (Pedro Spajari, Brazil, 46.94) before the Americans were disqualified for swimming in the wrong order.

With the scratch, Adrian, who still may anchor the men’s 400 medley on Sunday evening, will qualify only for the 400 free relay at next year’s World Championships (which he’ll have to swim). This does give him the option to also race at the Pan American Games, because he’s a relay-only swimmer for Worlds.



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I think he scratched to save his energy for the medley relay … Murphy Andrew dressel and Adrian I imagine for the final


I’m pretty sure it’s going to be Wilson over Andrew.


Ok if you say so.. but Wilson also has the 200 breast final tonight so he might be tired for the relay .. that would be good news for Packard if Australia since he will be fresh in comparison to Wilson


Wilson scratched the 200 presumably to rest up for the relay


A bit sad that his reign in US sprint free is coming to an end. Sometimes sports stars aren’t great role-models, certainly not the case for Adrian, class act through and through

Holy water

The polarization about dressel here is hilarious. Before pan pacs, he’s going to smash WRs left and right. Once he fails to meet those expectations, his swimming career is suddenly over!

As for role models, most people on USA’s swimming team is a good role model. Not many people are as stupid as Lochte.


We’re talking about Adrian here… not Dressel although he’s a factor in it being tough for Adrian to qualify.

I hope he does get to anchor the 2020 relay, hell I hope he’s the second man in the 100, but it’s not getting any easier to qualify for the sprints and he’s been around a long time.


Pretty sure Teddy’s referring to Adrian


Not so sure it has. He’s had two low 47 relay splits in the last two years. No one else has done that. I’d like him in a closet training until 2020 to make sure he can anchor the relays. He’s probably the relay anchor GOAT, in terms of number of times he’s pulled it out or held on. Always clutch.


Dressel has also had two 47 low relay splits in that time frame.


Lezak will always be the relay anchor goat


Without a doubt the single best anchor performance in 2008, but in terms of consistency and longevity in that fourth position, I would give it to Adrian.


Relay splits don’t get you qualified though. That 100 free is going to be stacked at trials. Dressel, Peroni, Apple, Conger, Levant, Tate

Ole 99

He’s not done swimming yet. That being stated, nothing lasts forever. We need folks to continue to come up through the ranks and be the next stars. Enjoy these guys/gals while they are here at at the top because it’s fleeting.


Nathan has at least a couple of good years left. Grevers missed 2010 pan pacs and 2011 but came back better than ever won the 2012 Olympics, 2013 worlds and again medaled at worlds at age 30 and 32. I think Nathan will swim great as a relay only swimmer next year and will be on the 2020 team at some event even if it is just the relay.


He’s getting married next month. That could change a lot of things.


“Women make the legs weak, Rock.” Ya gotta chase chickens.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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