The Remarkable Similarities Between Schooling and Nesty

Singaporean Joseph Schooling had a historic swim on Friday evening winning the men’s 100 butterfly in an Olympic record time of 50.39. It was a swim that has an incredible amount of similarities to another historic race in the same event that happened 28 years ago.

In 1988 Anthony Nesty of Suriname won the men’s 100 butterfly at the Seoul Olympic Games in an Olympic record time of 53.00.

So why are these events so similar?

As we have pointed out above they both won the 100 butterfly in Olympic record time, but that is only the first of several things that link these two races and athletes together. Both men became the first swimmer from their countries to win Olympic gold. In fact Nesty was the first athlete from Suriname to win Olympic gold in any sport.

Both men took down American swimming legends in races that are considered significant upsets. Schooling beat Michael Phelps while Nesty out touched Matt Biondi by one one-hundredth of a second.

Both men won their Olympic gold medal in their 21st year.

Both men attended Bolles School in Jacksonville, Florida. Schooling was coached by Sergio Lopez while during his time at Bolles Nesty was coached by Gregg Troy who he now works with at the University of Florida.

While at Bolles both men set the national independent high school record in the 100 butterfly.

Both men went on to be coached by one of the Reese brothers. Schooling is now attending the University of Texas where he is coached by Eddie Reese whereas Nesty went to the University of Florida where he was coached by Randy Reese.

These two swims were separated by 28 years, but there is an astonishing amount that tie them together.

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Naya Missy


Years of Plain Suck

Watch the video. It’s quite a time capsule. John Naber doing color commentary and providing plenty of snark.

After all of these years, it’s still amazing to see how long Biondi glided. It’s the “anti-Phelps finish.”

The award ceremony is precious. The podium is tiny. And they give the winner his medal first (as it should be) rather than last.

David Shaw

Joseph Schooling is also the first athlete from Singapore to win Olympic gold in any sport. Just like Nesty.

About Jeff Grace

Jeff Grace

Jeff is a 500 hour registered yoga teacher who holds diplomas in Coaching (Douglas College) and High Performance Coaching (National Coaching Institute - Calgary). He has a background of over 20 years in the coaching profession, where he has used a unique and proven teaching methodology to help many achieve their …

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