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.