Thor’s Hammer In Hand, Sarah Sjostrom Whistles Inside 100 ‘Fly & 200 Free WRs

Sarah Sjostrom by Patrick B. Kraemer

It was the fourth world record of a frenetic and race-bloated end to the world championships but Sarah Sjostrom’s 54.61 100m butterfly victory caught the eye more than any of the other standards that fell for several reasons

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It was the fourth world record of a frenetic and race-bloated end to the world championships but Sarah Sjostrom’s 54.61 100m butterfly victory caught the eye more than any of the other standards that fell for several reasons


Lennart van Haaften

She seems ready for a few years of domination. She’s had her ups and downs after her breakthrough at age 14 in 2008. Now it’s clear how good she really is in the 50/100 fly and 100/200 free.

Lennart van Haaften

After this meet, only 4 women’s short-course shiny-suit world records remain: 50 fly, 100 free, and 50/200 breaststroke. None looks unbreakable.


Indeed that’s a staggering statistic, Lennart. Incredible meet!

Vids here courtesy of Deportes Plus:


There was really no need to talk again talk about Ledecky in this post…. She wasnt there at world shortcourse championships and therefore should not have to be mentioned as the greatest swimmer of the year in every article about the world championships.

Craig Lord

Bart, the issue of how we measure such things has run through these championships because FINA decided to announce its winners on the EVE of their main global event of the year. I think the mention of Ledecky here is perfectly legitimate. I hope you sent FINA a note to tell them what they did was inappropriate and spoke of politics not sport.


Craig can you post a link for the final medal tally or the medal tally if it’s not an inconvience?

Craig Lord

On the end of the file, felixdp – bit wobbly but best I can do on the move.


While Ledecky again? Bartd1 is right, she was not at the WC she swam at US SCY Nationals, and does not matter that the announcement happened a night before the championship. Hosszu was at the Europeans, World Cups and SWC, and she was the best female swimmer at every major competion while she was breaking world records, European records all year long.

Craig Lord

Your opinion judbud, one I disagree with, as do many others who place greater weight on long-course swimming. You disagree – fine. As to the editorial judgment of what I include in articles, that’s my say, not yours or anyone else’s. I edited out the middle part of your comment, which assumes you know how others (me included) feel about a particular swimmer… you don’t – and you are factually wrong. All opinions about who should be swimmer of the year are welcome but no opinion is sought for what our editorial choices we make in any particular articles (and that goes for any writing in with comments of that nature)


At the end it didn’t matter when the awards were announced – I also disagree with the fact that they announced it before their biggest event of the year – since Katinka proved throughout the championship that she deserved it. Can’t really argue with 4 WRs and 3 other medals 🙂

Craig Lord

ITR – yes you can argue with it (anyone can agree or disagree) – our panel has yet to vote at SwimVortex but my choice won’t be Katinka – and not because she hasn’t had a fabulous season. On the criteria I work on (it is not a personality choice or one influenced by the publication dates of a magazine or by political and financial convenience), she doesn’t top the list. Katinka had a wonderful season – good for her – and she was hugely well rewarded for it. She will, I think, top other categories but not woman swimmer of the year, I would imagine.


Ledecky wouldn’t have won the 400 and 200 free in Doha if we convert the times on yards that she made at the nationals. She knew she was not prepared enough and she didn’t want to face the europeans, which are her real rivals. And if she doesn’t wanna face the real good ones she doesn’t deserve to be the best swimmer of the year. It something very legitimate, but it is what it is. The excuse of the dates because she was preparing the finals…pointless. Doha and the nationals were taking place at the same time. And by now Katinka have made much more WR than Ledecky. Just a matter of figures with a very easy solution.

Craig Lord

Scubi, at least base your views on facts: her choice had nothing to do with ‘not wanting to face rivals’… rubbish… she is a school girl who had time to race a couple of events in domestic competition as exams approach but no more and not take 7-10 days out and focus on a world s/c championship that is far remote from what her goals (and the goals of a lot of other world-class medal prospects) are. There is a vast difference in effort, focus and time out for a couple of days of domestic swimming with no pressure and a world titles in an environment that is not key to her plan. As for editorial judgments here, you have no say in the matter.


oh,come on…there were other swimmers of her age in Doha. Even in the USA team…don’t those go to school? Quite clear for me.

Clive Rushton

Scuba: conversions don’t work. scm to lcm is very misleading and scy to meters is totally the work of fantasy. Conversions are meaningless.

Craig Lord

Of course they go to school Scuba – and they make choices – academic and aquatic … but if anyone suggests that an Olympic champion who has titles world, Pan Pac and a heap of world records to her name – several in major competition – is somehow fearful of taking on her opposition, I’d call that ludicrous, silly and highly inaccurate.
Choice includes seeing short-course as a lesser thing in swimming than long-course. It is a choice made by very many every season – and it is a view shared by swim programs around the world, by athletes, coaches and all the way to those international agencies (and the vast majority of leading print publications who go heavy on sport) that simply don’t report world s/c swimming these days but are there when all the best of the world gather according to the cut dictated by those who run sport: long-course. There is a difference and it is a significant one.


I think Craig is right on this one, most swimmers focus on and prioritise long course competition. It stems from the format of most prestigious competition in the four year cycle, the Olympic Games. And to rank them further, world long course champs, then daylight to pan pacs, com games, European champs. How many Australians turned up to this event? Furthermore, given the magnitude of Ledecky’s performances this year, it is more than reasonable to judge all other exceptional efforts against her. And in my view, a long course wr (or set of them) trumps the same effort in the short pool.


I am surprised how tense this Female Swimmer of the year got. Lets do the following.

Female Swimmer of the year (Europe Cluster) – Katinka Hosszu
Female Swimmer of the year (World minus Europe Cluster) – Kathleen Ledecky
Peacemaker of the year – TommyL

Anyone joining me?

Craig Lord

🙂 TommyL… you have my best wishes in your new role 🙂 But there’ll be no breaking up the world in clusters to ease the pain one way or the other, me suspects … on SwimVortex, we won’t be voting in clusters 🙂 but we will try to give credit where due – and in a way that nods to the long traditions of a sport that I believe are still valid. As they say: “you can’t please all the people all the time”.


Craig, understood sir ;). When can we expect the results to be published on SwimVortex? Is there also going to be any sort of reader’s Swimmer of the year award?

Craig Lord

TommyL – will invite readers to vote as soon as I can get to it… hopefully by end of the week. And we’ll publish our poll in the week that Santa’s on the move 🙂


LOL @ Ledecky being scared. HAHAHA. I hope Ledecky kicked their as*es in Kazan and Rio. And show everybody who is the real boss and not some delusional posters here talking some trash. Ledecky is already an Olympic champion with world titles and breaking World Records, just because she’s not competing in the short course, doesn’t mean she’s scared. What a delusional post.


All this debate about the “best swimmer” is a nonsense. There are a number (say 4 or more) outstanding swimmers who produce fantastic results at various occasions. Asking which one of them is “the best” is as meaningless as asking which food or drink is the best. We should congratulate to all of them.

Craig Lord

piponya, i think there are more than 4 on that basis… and while your point is taken, “best” prizes are the stuff of the world… how you measure them is open to debate … but you’re right when you say we should congratulate them all, something that FINA singularly failed to do when it issued its media release to the world ignoring a vast swathe of candidates on the eve of a world championship, naming only its world cup winners when knowing that the vast majority of swimmers don’t even take part … and with a will to completely overlook a long-course season that was not branded FINA this year. That was a mistake, in my view, and one that has divided its constituency, uneccesarily. Unwise.

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