SwimSwam Pulse is a recurring feature tracking and analyzing the results of our periodic A3 Performance Polls. You can cast your vote in our newest poll on the SwimSwam homepage, about halfway down the page on the right side, or you can find the poll embedded at the bottom of this post.
Our most recent poll asked SwimSwam readers if they’d rather have an Olympic gold medal or a world record:
Question: Which Would You Rather Have?
- Olympic gold medal – 80.9%
- World record – 19.1%
A vast majority of SwimSwam voters said they’d rather have an Olympic gold medal than a world record.
Coronavirus quarantine really brought out the votes, as this poll brought in the most votes we’ve ever had in a SwimSwam poll. This one garnered even more votes than any single matchup in our ‘hardest event’ bracket, the most-voted poll in recent memory.
Olympic gold comes with a prestige that translates well across other sports – fans of team sports might not understand the implications of a world record, but Olympic gold speaks to sports fans at all levels. There’s something tangible about Olympic gold – while a world record can (and will) eventually be taken away, a gold medal is a piece of hardware you keep forever. Sometimes it even attaches itself permanently to your name. There are also cases where world record can be gamed – like when FINA started recognizing mixed relay records, and the first to host a sanctioned meet could stamp their names (however briefly) onto the world record books. It’s much harder to ‘game’ your way to a gold medal.
World record, of course, has the argument of history. It’s a more exclusive club. Every four years, we get a slew of new Olympic gold medalists. But world records fall only a few times a year. Olympic medals can sometimes be aided by a weak field, an injury or DQ to a top contender. World records rarely get watered down in that way. Still, less than 20% of voters picked the world record in our poll.
Below, vote in our new A3 Performance Poll, which asks voters for their opinions on the 2021 FINA World Championships:
The A3 Performance Poll is courtesy of A3 Performance, a SwimSwam partner