Tokyo 2020 Olympics: Day 4 Finals Preview

2020 TOKYO SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES

Haven’t done your homework? Cram for tonight’s Day 4 Olympic Swimming Finals with our quick-hitting session preview:

Women’s 200 Free Final

The big story will be Katie Ledecky vs Ariarne Titmusround 2. This 200 showdown comes after Titmus chased down and beat Ledecky in the 400 free in a showdown of the two fastest swimmers ever in that event.

Titmus is probably better-suited for the speed of a 200, and at Australian Olympic Trials, she was just hundredths of a second away from a super-suited world record. But don’t count out Ledecky, who did have more early speed in that 400.

Beyond those two, Hong Kong’s Siobhan Haughey should be in the mix for a medal, which would be Hong Kong’s first-ever Olympic swimming medal.

Men’s 200 Fly Final

World-Record-Watch continues as Kristof Milak is expected to challenge his own 2019 world record in this 200 fly. The 21-year-old Hungarian has surpassed even the great Michael Phelps in this event, and it’s not out of the question that the rising butterflyer could become the first man under 1:50 in this event. Milak was 1:50.73 at age 19 in 2019.

The battle for the minor medals should be an entertaining one. South Africa’s Chad le Clos is known for his aggressive – some would say irrational – front-half speed in this particularly punishing event. It’s very possible le Clos is leading everyone, even Milak, at the 100-mark. But then things should tighten up in a field with several great closers like Leonardo de Deus of Brazil and Tamas Kenderesi of Hungary.

Women’s 200 IM Final

The women’s 200 IM is much more wide open, with first-time Olympian Kate Douglass holding the top seed. Douglass and her college teammate Alex Walsh are the two young Americans leading this race, and both should be in the mix for medals.

Where most medal finals have the best races concentrated in the middle of the pool, it’s possible this one has the leaders coming on the outside. 400 IM gold medalist Yui Ohashi will start up in lane 2, and on the outside of her is world record-holder and defending Olympic champ Katinka HosszuOhashi dropped 3.7 seconds from prelims to finals in the 400 IM, so don’t count her out even from an outside lane.

Great Britain’s Abbie Wood is the #2 seed into the final, and watch for China’s Yu Yiting to challenge her own world junior record.

Women’s 1500 free Final

Katie Ledecky will once again take on a brutal 200 free/1500 free double today, though she’s the heavy favorite in the latter event. Ledecky was extremely good in heats of the 1500, putting up the #8 swim of all-time in the event at 15:35.35. It’s not totally clear how much this event double will affect her speed, but she’s got a great shot to hit just the 5th swim ever under 15:30, or even challenge her world record of 15:20.48.

China’s Wang Jianjiahe leads the battle for silver, but she’ll be right next to defending world champ Simona Quadarella of Italy.

Men’s 4×200 free relay final

We’ve got yet one more world record opportunity – and this one would be a massive shockwave for swimming as a sport.

Since full-body racing suits were banned in 2010, we’ve seen all three women’s relay world records fall in long course meters. But none of the three men’s relays have fallen, now standing upwards of 12 years.

The British men have a realistic chance to break through for the first men’s long course relay world record since 2009. They dominated the field last night, and James Guy once again proved his relay prowess with a 1:44.6 split in prelims. The Brits will add individual 200 free gold medalist Tom Dean and silver medalist Duncan Scott to a lineup that could have three swimmers in the 1:44s. The 7:58.55 world record relay had three 1:44s in the mix, including both Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte.

Semifinals Quick Hits:

  • Men’s 100 free:
    • World champ Caeleb Dressel and Olympic champ Kyle Chalmers will continue to fire warning shots across heats, with Dressel heading semifinal 1 and Chalmers semifinal 2. Dressel faces Italian star Alessandro Miressi in his heat, and they’ll be surrounded by two teenagers (Korea’s Hwang Sun-woo, 18; and Romania’s David Popovici, 16) fighting over the world junior record.
    • Chalmers gets to battle breakout Italian Thomas Ceccon, who broke 48 for the first time ever in prelims. 100 back silver medalist Kliment Kolesnikov is also in that heat, along with U.S. relay hero Zach Apple, who split 46.6 holding off a 46.4 Chalmers earlier in the meet.
  • Women’s 200 fly:
    • We’ll get the first actual eliminations in this event after a no-show left just 16 swimmers in heats. That should mean very spread-out heats where the frontrunners can get out to a big lead. China’s Zhang Yufei is the favorite, and she’ll lead the second semi next to countrywoman Yu Liyan. The first heat will feature the two Americans, Hali Flickinger and 100 back bronze medalist Regan Smith, in the middle two lanes.
  • Men’s 200 breast:
    • We tend to see big breaststroke swims in the semifinals, so don’t be surprised if the world record falls in this one. Anton Chupkov of Russia holds the world mark, and he’ll swim right next to #2 all-time swimmer Zac Stubblety-Cook of Australia. Neither man is a speedster, so expect the race to really heat up in the second 100.
    • The first semifinal might be a little different, with Arno Kamminga more of a true speed breaststroker who could push the pace early.

In This Story

109
Leave a Reply

Subscribe
Notify of
109 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Little Mermaid
1 month ago

Let’s get this started! I feel a big upset coming on!

Dressel will come 3rd in 100 free
Reply to  Little Mermaid
1 month ago

Agreed. All the Americans are going to go 1:42 splits, jointly win the Nobel peace prize in the process for the feat, and then Barney the dinosaur is going to get elected President of the United States

Covidman

Dressel no get 3rd. Him gon’ go 46.64 in final. You username bad.

Robbos

Haha
I want the Aussies to all go 1.42 too.
Would love to see Chalmers, Scott & Dressel all anchoring the 4 x 200 as we hit the 100 metres mark, Chalmers swimming past them in a time of 1.41.00 to win gold.
Then I woke up
GB for Gold, end of story, hopefully Aussies get up for silver, but Russia, Italy & US will be fighting for that.

SNygans01
Reply to  Robbos
1 month ago

Very interested to see what kind of split Chalmers can throw down – he’s going to have to be good today.
He went only 1:45.37 in Gwangju, which is slower than you’d expect (given his 47.08 in the 100 at same meet).

Robbos
Reply to  SNygans01
1 month ago

I have been waiting for years for Chalmers to throw out a 1.44 or even 1.43, just shows how hard it is to swim both these events these days (notice Scott dropped 100 free for 200 free).
Hopefully a 1.44 high in the relay today.

Last edited 1 month ago by Robbos
He said what?
Reply to  Robbos
1 month ago

I can see Kyle going a 43-high or 44-low. He’s that good. At least I’m hoping to witness this.

Ol' Longhorn

Bold prediction coming off the men’s 400 IM, 400 free, women’s 100 breast.

OldSwimmer

late, Barney the dinosaur is already the President of the United Status

Not Tapered 🏊🥇

For an American, not out of the realm of possibilities.

john26
1 month ago

So who gets to play Tom Dean in a movie? Rupert Grint or George MacKay?

john26
1 month ago

interesting that Hwang’s first 100 + Scott’s second 200 adds up to 1:42.66. Crazy how fast Biedermann was

Clownley Honks
Reply to  john26
1 month ago

Unbreakable record, 1:42 mid seems as fast as a human could go.

Sprint Guy
Reply to  Clownley Honks
1 month ago

Once the 100 free gets down to 44 low, then I think the record will be broken. At this point the only limiting factor is Top speed not endurance. All these guys second 100’s are within 2 seconds of their 1st 100 but neither of their individual 100 free’s are fast enough for them to take the 200 out faster than 50.XX. First guy to take it out in 49 and hold on to that is breaking the record. But to do that, you need to have a fast 100 or else a 49 will be too close to your maximum sprint speed that it will be impossible to hold on to that pace for an entire 200

DDias
Reply to  Sprint Guy
1 month ago

44low???46something would put that type of time.Ian Torpe could do 1:44 and never went sub48 in 100free… Scheffer did 1:44.66 and never went sub-49 in his life…

DDias
Reply to  Clownley Honks
1 month ago

I could see Popovici doing 1:41 high closing in 25high in a near future.

rip handrail
Reply to  Clownley Honks
1 month ago

Ian Thorpe with a supersuit could challenge it

Facts
1 month ago

Milak would win the 200 fly wearing a Speedo that’s how good he is

T S
Reply to  Facts
1 month ago

He would win it in a normal jammer that’s how good he is

Last edited 1 month ago by T S
Will 37
Reply to  T S
1 month ago

Speedo = Jammer/Brief in the US

frug
Reply to  Facts
1 month ago

Thorpe would have won the 400m free with numbers he put in 1999 when he was 16 wearing briefs.

Coach
Reply to  Facts
1 month ago

He could quite possibly win it while wearing a parachute for the first 100.

GTS
Reply to  Facts
1 month ago

If Mel Stewart wore a jammer in Perth in 1991, his time might win a silver tonight.

Sub13
1 month ago

Seems like a pretty clear day:

W200F: Titmus favourite, possible upset potential
M200F: Milak 100%
W200IM: 98% one of the Americans, not sure which one.
W1500: 100% Ledecky
M200x4: 99.9% GB

So seems like 2 for US, 1 for AUS/GB/HUN. If USA gets the upset in the 200FREE (that seems most vulnerable) then they could end up with 3, but I’m pretty certain the others are all pretty set.

Good luck to all the swimmers!

Little Mermaid
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Walsh!

Facts
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

98 percent for the Americans def too high for the IM it’s anyone’s race

Games Juy
Reply to  Facts
1 month ago

Definitely over optimistic on the 200im, could be anyone.

Swimmer24
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Wouldn’t exactly say the 200im is completely set, given how close it is between 1st and 8th going in. Probably the most wide open race of the night

Sub13
Reply to  Swimmer24
1 month ago

Yes fair call. I was probably a bit bullish on that. I am still almost certain that it’s the USA’s but maybe not 98%

Stephen
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Anyone could win that IM.

Little Mermaid
Reply to  Stephen
1 month ago

Anyone? I can’t! No way! Especially after just finishing a White Castle extra value meal!

Eliott
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

I would say titmus around 90% favourite too.
Titmus 1.53.1
Ledecky 1.54.0
Haughey 1.54.2

Only titmus going too slow in first 100 would prevent her from winning. Also that 200 im is too high for two american. Ohashi and wood should challenge them. More like 50% american and 50% other.

Chris
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Douglass

Honest Observer
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

I pick Douglass too, but don’t entirely count out Ohashi. She’s swimming with confidence now, and it’s quite possible she was playing possum in the early rounds.

AnEn
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Sorry, but you seriously think that the americans in women’s 200 IM are a bigger favorite than Titmus in the 200 free … ?

Tomek
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

And who is your pick to possibly beat Titmus in 200 free?

He said what?
Reply to  Sub13
1 month ago

Titmus 100%

GATOR CHOMP 🐊
1 month ago

I’m wishing i was the railing tonight

Shadia
1 month ago

tiny mistake on the 4X200m relay World record the time is wrong

M Palota
1 month ago

Milak goes under 1:50, Penny’s on the podium in the 200; Titmus wins in 1:53-low. Ledecky crushes a 15:30 mile and the Brits take the 4×200 in a new world record. It takes 47.7 to get into the finals of the men’s 100 and the wild card: Popovici is first out of the semis in 47.1.

GTS
Reply to  M Palota
1 month ago

If Popovici gets into the final, which he should, and somehow ends up winning the the final, Putin will invade Romania prior to Paris 2024 to claim Popovici as one of their own.

M Palota
Reply to  M Palota
1 month ago

Missed it with Milak but I’ve never seen anyone swim an easier 1:51 2’fly. Damm, he looked like he could do it again! Penny got a podium – that woman is a flat-out racer! – and Titmus was 1:53-mid. The Brits missed the WR by 0.03. So happy for James Guy and Zach Apple needs to be a goldfish. To quote Ted Lasso, a goldfish is the happiest animal in the world ‘cos it’s got a 5 second memory. Get ready for the medley relay, son. It did take a 47.8 to make finals and the fastest time was 47.1.

Check back tomorrow as I’m on a roll!

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

Read More »