Unretired Canadian Olympian Brent Hayden Possibly Eyeing Des Moines Return

As a follow-up to the news that Canadian Olympic medalist Brent Hayden decided to come out of retirement, we now know at which competition the freestyle ace may be making his return.

Hayden, the 2012 Olympic bronze medalist in the 100m freestyle and Canadian record holder in the 50m free, 100m free and 200 free, announced back in October 2019 that he has set his sights on the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games after 7 years off from the sport.

The 36-year-old is training at the High-Performance Centre-Vancouver and told SwimSwam this week that training ‘is going really well.’ His 6-month probation since coming out of retirement just ended this week, which means he is narrowing in on his first competition. Hayden says he will most likely be competing at the Des Moines, Iowa stop of the Pro Swim Series.

The meet is set for March 4th-7th at the MidAmerican Energy Aquatic Center at the Wellmark YMCA. The 2019 edition of the Des Moines stop had its share of international talent, including male freestyle elite swimmers such as Breno Correia of Brazil and Jeremy Bagshaw of Hayden’s nation of Canada.

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1 year ago

Oh Canada, my home and native land 🇨🇦

Reply to  Ragnar
1 year ago

GREAT for him True grit

1 year ago

This is unbelievably exciting. Hayden is without a doubt the most underrated (and most unlucky) male sprinter of all time. I really wish more people took the time to read into his career; given the circumstances he has faced (being mistakenly beaten up by Greek police during the Athens olympics, debilitating back spasms at pivotal moments throughout his career, etc) and the near misses (numerous near-podium performances, beating a world record but Biedermann also broke it ahead of him in the very same race, beating Phelps in the prelims of the 200FR in Beijing 2008 but then having to withdraw from the event, etc.), it’s going to be thrilling to see him back in good spirits and apparently in great… Read more »

Reply to  SwimmerFan99
1 year ago

Brent was an amazing swimmer and I hope the best on his return. But beating Phelps in the prelims of Beijing in the 200 free…let’s be serious for a second here…that doesn’t really mean anything. Brent went a 1:46.40 in Beijing. Phelps would eventually get the WR (at the time) in finals in a 1:42.96. Phelps just needed to get into the top 16 in prelims back in 2008 and the easier he could swim and just sneak into the next set of semi-finals/finals the better given the number of races he was doing.

Reply to  SwimmerFan99
1 year ago

Anyone have a link to an article going over the Athens beating? I never knew that!

Scott Morgan
Reply to  SwimmerFan99
1 year ago

And, he was robbed in 2007 with his tied Gold with banned swimmer Magnini.

Coach John
Reply to  Scott Morgan
1 year ago

in more ways than one

Reply to  Scott Morgan
1 year ago

This is bizarre: Magnini had already won the 100 free at Worlds two years before, overcoming, in a great final, Schoeman and Neethling beyond others. In that period he wasn’t considered a “controversial swimmer” at all, and I really think that he was a great swimmer. The issues you are referring to are relating to the latest years of his career, 9-10 years after Worlds07.

1 year ago

The 6 month mandatory delay in returning to competition post retirement seems odd.

Any ideas on whether it is warranted?

Reply to  Seth
1 year ago

I’m not sure exactly what the case is here, but often that six-month period is regarding being back in the drug-testing pool.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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