U.S. Crushes Record for Most Worlds Medals; Canada, Italy Also Make History

2022 FINA WORLD AQUATICS CHAMPIONSHIPS

Final medals table

Rank Country Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 USA 17 12 16 45
2 Australia 6 9 2 17
3 Italy 5 2 2 9
4 Canada 3 4 4 11
5 France 2 4 2 8
6 Sweden 2 2 0 4
7 Hungary 2 0 0 2
7 Romania 2 0 0 2
9 Great Britain 1 1 3 5
10 China 1 0 4 5
11 Lithuania 1 0 1 2
12 Germany 0 3 1 4
13 Japan 0 2 2 4
14 Brazil 0 1 1 2
14 Netherlands 0 1 1 2
14 Poland 0 1 1 2
17 South Korea 0 1 0 1
18 South Africa 0 0 1 1
18 Ukraine 0 0 1 1

The U.S. picked up eight medals on the final day of the World Championships to finish with 45 total this week — the most ever by a wide margin despite missing the podium in 10 events. The previous record for most medals at Worlds was 38 in 2017, also by the U.S. 

The U.S. has won the most total medals at every World Championships except two – 1986 Madrid and 1982 Guayaquil, where East Germany dominated. 

“We have crushed it this whole week,” said Regan Smith, who led off the U.S.’s gold-medal-winning women’s 4×100 medley relay on Saturday and also won the individual 100 back earlier this week. “We’ve had such good energy. This team is really special. It’s like no other team I’ve ever been on.”

The Americans broke their own record during Saturday’s first final, the men’s 50 back, where Justin Ress won gold (after an overturned DQ) and Hunter Armstrong took silver. They also put a pair on the podium Saturday in the 400 IM, where Katie Grimes and Emma Weyant finished behind 15-year-old Canadian Summer McIntosh

Katie Ledecky won gold medals in all four of her events to lead the U.S. overall while Caeleb Dressel earned a pair before withdrawing for unspecified medical reasons. 

Thanks in part to three medals from McIntosh, Canada finished with its highest count ever (11), three more than in 2019. Italy also brought home its most total Worlds medals with nine, up from eight in 2019. 

France saw the biggest jump in the medals standings, taking home two golds and eight total medals this week – its most since 2013 – after earning just two bronze in 2019. The emergence of 20-year-old Frenchman Leon Marchand helped them place 5th in the overall standings this year compared to 19th at the last Worlds.

17-year-old Romanian David Popovici swept the 100 free and 200 free to give his home nation the most gold medals in its history. Poland’s two medals were its most since 2015. 

Some countries may have benefited from the absence of Russian and Belarusian athletes from this year’s World Championships. Russia won 16 medals at the last World Championships, third-most among competing countries. Other countries had disappointing showings despite FINA’s ban on Russians. 

South Africa won less than two medals for the first time since 2001. China won just five medals, its fewest since 2007.

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Dave
3 months ago

The pure salt coming off of the Aussie SwimSwammers in this thread… Relax guys.

Personal Best
Reply to  Dave
3 months ago

Dude… from both sides. Sheesh.

There is a new level of obsession and bitterness from a small contingent. Let’s not kid ourselves. It’s like school yard taunts and insults.

NB1
3 months ago

what happened to Dressel?

Jean Marie
3 months ago

Has Dressel revealed the reason for his withdrawal yet?

anty75
Reply to  Jean Marie
3 months ago

There can be lots of reasons why he doesn’t want to, its his right.

Tracy Kosinski
3 months ago

Ok, y’all have a bad habit of throwing your own under the bus. And it starts with SwimSwam.

Lazor, Dressel, Andrew, King, even Ledecky.

SwimSwam has to stop throwing shade. It starts at the top, as usual.

How many times ya gotta remind Lazor she was the only one who didn’t get a medal? Seriously. Has she not given her team enough to be able to have a bad meet?

YIKES guys!

RMS
Reply to  Tracy Kosinski
3 months ago

Didn’t Lazor win a relay medal for swimming prelims?

RCP
Reply to  RMS
3 months ago

No. Alex Walsh swam the breast leg in prelims. A questionable call (and I’m a UVA fan).

Snarky
Reply to  RCP
3 months ago

Home cooking

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Tracy Kosinski
3 months ago

lol wot.

They’re reporting on all the medals the US won. It’s probably relevant to point out which swimmers did or didn’t win medals. (Turns out, nearly all of them did!)

Would you have preferred they pointed out the swimmers that medaled? Just a giant list of the whole team instead?

Like I’d prolly agree that Braden DMing Lazor every 20 minutes saying “hey just another reminder: you still didn’t win a medal” would be a bit uncouth, but you’re really reaching here.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Steve Nolan
3 months ago

It’s best for the coaching staff to provide an explanation.

Snarky
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
3 months ago

It’s called the DeSorbo effect!

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Snarky
3 months ago

I would not doubt it.

However, Alex Walsh was dissed by DeSorbo to swim the final of the women’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay. Time for Alex Walsh to pick another event, the 400 IM in lieu of the 200 FR, for the 2023 International Team Trials.

Lia
3 months ago

Australia should be proud without a doubt the experience gained for a lot of their young stars. I’ve been impressed with Jenna Strauch in particular.

Considering they had potential gold medalists missing. The women need another backstroker and flyer, since they are stacked with depth in the free events.

Last edited 3 months ago by Lia
commonwombat
Reply to  Lia
3 months ago

Right away !! Off to the instant cloning labs we go !!

Seriously, these things go in cycles. During the 90s-00s, AUS had a couple of generations of outstanding female flyers and breaststrokers, however backstrokers were comparitively weak from the mid 90s until Seebohm emerged in late 00s and there were relatively few top class freestylers until into the 00s.

You’ll also find it very rare that AUS will have anywhere near comparable strength on both men and women’s sides at the same time. Only USA has the depth and spread to generally be competitive across the board in both genders

Awsi Dooger
3 months ago

What happened to the 3 AM thread? I’m ready

Swifter
3 months ago

Sorry to pour some cold water, but this a typical american headline, that sets the US team for future higly-unjustified “dissapointment”.

The headline reflects the kind of mentality that has put the US’s best PROVEN champions from Simon Biles to Dressel to Regan Smith to Lilly King, under unimaginable psychological strain. Enough to make even the greatest buckle.
How about letting go of the “second is 1st loser” and the incessant record seeking mentality, and just celebrate great performances.

There were plenty (Alex Walsh, Ryan Murphy, Katie Ledecky, Bobby Finke, Torrie Huske, Regan Smith, Clare Curzan, Leah Hayes, Katie Grimes, Michael Andrew and many more.

Enjoy them.

The US has GREAT swimmers.
How about releasing… Read more »

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

USA just reloads. It’s the “next man up” mentality.

If you think the USA is dominant in swimming, it’s nothing compared to women’s basketball at the Summer Olympics.

jeff
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

i mean this article is about total medals not even just gold, so it’s not even necessarily pressure for American athletes to be the best in the world.

Even so, I think it’s perfectly fine to celebrate good performances—record breaking performances even. Any athlete at this level knows that breaking records each time is completely not doable and that performing as well as you can in that moment is all that can be done.

Swifter
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

That’s what I meant. Celebrate individual performances, put less pressure on “total medal haul”.
Hell, let them enjoy their swimming.
Look at Paltrinieri. A huge star in Italy.
No excessive down when out of the medals in the 800, and then blasts the 1500.
Look a Sara “losing” the 100 fly – no worries. Turns around and blasts the 50 & 50.
Does Dressel get the same relaxed treatment from the US fans, or does he feel he’s under a MUST WIN mandate.
Be honest. Are US fans generous to their heroes in defeat. Me thinks – less.

jeff
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

I mean I think that’s just a result of Dressel consistently winning like everything.

In the 800, Paltrinieri took bronze in 2017 and silver in 2021 and in the 1500, he took bronze in 2019 and completely missed the podium in 2021. Sjostrom took silver in the 100 fly in 2019 and also missed the podium in 2021. Both of these swimmers are amazing but also don’t have dominant gold medal streaks in these events right now.

I think these two swimmers are pretty comparable to Americans like Regan Smith or Ryan Murphy- they’ve have very strong performances but don’t have a sense of being unbeatable so it’s not really a big deal when they miss gold.

Meanwhile,… Read more »

Robbos
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

If you include the last recent WC just completed in thelast 3 world meets, he didn’t win the 100 free, 50 free or 100 butt. So your theory shot down in flames.

jeff
Reply to  Robbos
3 months ago

well… yes, that’s why people were disappointed, because he came in the 3x defending champ in all of those events and came out with no medals in any of them. I feel like you missed the entire point

Last edited 3 months ago by jeff
Robbos
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

Not sure I did, but you got my point, someone who consistently wins, wins, but Dressel didn’t win this year.

Jamesjabc
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

I think saying Dressel ‘consistently wins everything’ is a bit much. Ledecky consistently wins the 800 and 1500, and before 2019 consistently won the 400. You could certainly say she consistently wins everything.

Dressel didn’t win any individual medals in 2016, didn’t even medal 50 fly in 2017, didn’t win 50 or 100 free in 2018 at short course worlds or Pan Pacs. The only time he’s won all four of his events in the same year was 2019.

actual mental health professional
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

ss has a very robust Italian language site, that covers the sport almost exactly the same way as the English language site, done by Italians, for Italian readers, including GP.

So is it possible that the coverage isn’t the difference? That the Americans aren’t the difference? That the mentality is the difference?

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  jeff
3 months ago

Perspective:

https://youtu.be/pivXUhLwfbo

Maybe the best swimming interview ever.

swifter
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
3 months ago

Smart woman.

Paul Thomas
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

Every championships is its own animal. 2015 was a disaster, and then 2016 was amazing. You just never know.

(Also, I don’t think there’s a whole lot to learn from Italy going within a second of the world record. Sometimes, as Pedro Martinez would say, you’ve just got to shake their hands and call them your daddies.)

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Paul Thomas
3 months ago

Outside of Katie Ledecky, the 2015 FINA World Aquatics Championships was a disaster. Flash forward two years, the 2017 FINA World Aquatics Championships was a major success.

Eouai
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

Odd take.

“Don’t put pressure on the swimmers by talking about their collective success. Put pressure on the swimmers by talking only about their individual success.”

swifter
Reply to  Eouai
3 months ago

Not really.
Expecting gold and record medal hauls beforehand = pressure.
Coming in with less outside pressure and celebrating performance as it happens when it happens = less pressure.
Take your time. Look at Sara Sjostrom and Ranomi in previous years, at Gregorio, at Kylie Masse.
Or just forget about all that and just keep enjoying the meltdown drama… Who cares about the athletes?

Eouai
Reply to  swifter
3 months ago

This article was literally written after the event completed, celebrating the success after the event completed, not before. Seems you are emotionally digging in your heels, wanting your argument to be right, but not even listening to your own contradictions.

At the end of the day – any amount of attention and spotlight adds pressure. Some more than others.

I like the idea that I think you are trying to promote – that it’s better to celebrate swimmers, instead of putting tons of focus on immense expectations beforehand. But that’s exactly what this article was doing – celebrating a record-breaking success, after it happened.

But it’s also human nature – even a celebration of performance concurrently or after… Read more »

Dave
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

What does “typically American headline” mean?

Last edited 3 months ago by Dave
Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Dave
3 months ago

It means disdain from the peanut gallery.

swifter
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
3 months ago
swifter
Reply to  swifter
3 months ago
swifter
Reply to  Dave
3 months ago

A Vince Lombardi inspired headline.
Do you really not see it?

actual mental health professional
Reply to  Swifter
3 months ago

I read this comment section and I see two things:

“Swimswam needs to stop pointing out when people don’t win medals”
and
“Swimswam needs to stop pointing out when people win medals”

SO you can see how everyone just has their heads up their a** and is trying to use ‘mental health’ as an excuse to somehow wipe away…everything. Which is fine! But then what you are advocating for is the end of sport as a professional endeavor or a spectator sport. Which is fine! But also, probably you’re in the wrong place then.

The real answer, and I think maybe Coleman said this on his podcast, is that USA Swimming needs to help the athletes deal with… Read more »

swifter
Reply to  actual mental health professional
3 months ago

The media? So you think this is exclusive to the media?

Have you heard any place in the world referring to the silver medalist as the 1st loser?
Have you ever heard anywhere else that “winning isn’t everything, its the only thing”?

There are many gracious and grateful winners all over the world, who sometimes win, but who are not made to feel like losers with a silver medal (i remember Lilly King saying something about that).

Self inflicted pressure is bad enough. Every swimmer knows that. Public pressure just multiplies it.
Here’s to hoping that swimmers – Dressel and Regan Smith included – also get to enjoy their hard earned ride.

Joel
3 months ago

Well Ress didn’t deserve his. He should have been gone in the heats and semis.
No mention of Australia? They did quite well, especially on relays.
Pretty sure Australia won the most gold in 2001 btw.
Really happy to see Italy and Canada going well.

Boganville
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

Kangaroo piss

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Boganville
3 months ago

2001? What relevance does the 2001 FINA World Aquatics Championships have to the present? Talk about a non sequitur.

Joel
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
3 months ago

The article was talking about the USA winning the medal tally every time except 1982 and 1986, but they haven’t always won the gold medal tally.

The unoriginal Tim
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

The Aussies blokes outside of Chalmers and ZSC are weak mate.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  The unoriginal Tim
3 months ago

Come on! You need to give credit to Winnington. That was one heck of a swim in the men’s 400 meter freestyle. I was impressed.

12 plus gold in budapest
Reply to  Joel
3 months ago

lmao the absolute state of aussie swimswammers

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  12 plus gold in budapest
3 months ago

Apoplectic!

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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