Olympic swimming star Simone Manuel delivered at the 2019 World Championships. She got off to a slow start, experiencing some hiccups, but, on balance, she more than responded to any doubters. In this interview she provides insight into what she was thinking throughout the competition and what she learned.
After the 2016 Olympics and 2017 World Championships, I felt Simone was in a great position to sweep the 50 and 100m freestyle at 2019 Worlds. I expected dissenting opinions and strong arguments about how that would not happen, but, at the end of the day, Simone is a big-meet swimmer. Big meet swimmers are different. They’re gladiators, and Simone epitomes the concept of the big meet swimmer.
Looking ahead to the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the Olympic Games, these predictions are way too earlier, but let’s play the game. I do want to add that I think Simone could retire today. She’s an icon. She’s accomplished everything you want in a sports career, and winning one more Olympic medal would be an enormous accomplishment, however, I also believe Simone’s got more talent in the tank to reveal.
Simone – 2019 World Championship Results
- 50m Free – Gold – 24.05
- 100m Free – Gold – 52.04
I’m going back to my predictions pre-worlds for the U.S. Olympic Trials. I want to see:
- 50m Free – 23.89
- 100m Free – 51.9
2020 Olympic Games?
I can’t say what it’ll take to win the 2020 Olympics (maybe next spring we can play the predictions games again), but I am banking on Simone being a big meet swimmer. I predict she sweeps the 50 and 100m freestyles in Tokyo. But who cares what I think! What do you think?
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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.