Which Champions Will Keep Their Crowns In Kazan? Form Guide: Women’s 4x100m Free

World-record setters Cate Campbell, Emma McKeon, Mel Schlanger and Bronte Campbell [Photo: Ian MacNicol]

Who is shaping up for a knockout in Kazan at world titles in August? Which teams are looking strong? Our guide reaches the relays, USA’s women looking vulnerable as they approach the defence of the 4x100m freestyle crown. The might in their way is Australia, with The Netherlands threatening

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Who is shaping up for a knockout in Kazan at world titles in August? Which teams are looking strong? Our guide reaches the relays, USA’s women looking vulnerable as they approach the defence of the 4x100m freestyle crown. The might in their way is Australia, with The Netherlands threatening


Bad Anon

I thought Simone Manuel had an opening split of 53.25 at pan pacs, she will be under 53 flat start this summer


Yes it will likely be Manuel instead of Hardy, who is too inconsistent outside of the 50 breast to be trusted with an evening swim if there are other options


Anything can happen yes, but, C1 split 51.59 at the Commonwealth games 4×100 medley last year. And all AUS first three legs can and have split 52. Barring catastrophe, AUS should take this.
Again anything can happen, in 2013 Barcelona I predicted AUS to take the gold, but USA swam out of their skin and firing on all cylinders.


Manuel will definitely swim. She is USA best sprinter right now.

Craig Lord

Yes, she did Bad Anon. Launched before I was ready. It happens when the doorbell rings and the house is suddenly full of guests 🙂 Cate a faster split, too. Picture very similar overall: Australia dominant this time. If they all fire and no mistakes, they can’t be beaten this season.


The Aussies look unbeatable.

Abby Weitzel is a true wild card. She has enormous potential and very limited LCM meet results. I can see her becoming the premier American sprinter by Rio.

Bad Anon

You’re a great journalist Craig Lord, can see you’ve already adjusted accordingly 🙂


Australia at a lock!

If there is one event that I’d bet the mortgage on – metaphorically speaking – it’s this one. Can’t see anyone touching them. The Campbell’s can’t be challenged by anyone but themselves and they – the Aussies – have a wealth of choices for the other two positions. And they’re all fast!

The race for second will be close and I’m going to go with the US on there. Simone Manuel is going well, Missy’s tough and their young Abby Weintzel might be a gem.

The Dutch are third, I think. Too much of a drop off after Ramoni and Fenke. (I’m not even going to try to spell their last names!)


Australia winning here is as certain as Ledecky winning the distance free races or Peaty winning the 100 breast! I just hope the US quartet can improve their splits and edge out Holland!


The Aussie women here are even bigger favorites than the men were in London. For a matter of perspective, it’s functionally equivalent to having a 47.1 swimmer, a 47.6, and two 48.0 flat swimmers, with the former two tested in battle in international waters.

Just me

Schlanger also has a faster split than stated. She was on 52.3 I believe in the heat in Glasgow.


Yes, anything can happen, but, the 4X 100 is Australia’s to lose. The 2 most bankable relays are the Aussie girls in the 4X100 & the American girls in the 4X200.


I love the relays, in an individual sport, this is the team part.


As said above, this event is Australia’s as much as ledecky has a lock on the distance events (barring dq). The great thing for australia is that they have another 3 girls who have sub-54 flat starts in them – Brittany elmslie, Madison Wilson and Emily seebohm – they can actually race an australian B team, rest the big 4 in the heats, and still qualify first.

Mel Wright went 52.47 in Glasgow heats so wouldn’t be too different to Craig’s calculation


So- what are the odds of a new world record? The Australian girls on 2014 form could have gone a bit faster than their Glasgow swim.
I think it is on. What an amazing set of sprinters Aus have – depth down to no 6.


Just ask Cordes about what a lock in relay gold feels like. Barring a dq Aussie do not lose this. But I think things will be tighter in Rio.


Cate Campbell is a purest sprinter as they come. She is more in the vein of Dara Torres than Jenny Thompson.

No way will she swim 200 or post a good 200 time that warrant a berth in 4×200. To secure a place in AUS 4×200 she will have to swim 1:56mid. Not going to happen.

Bad Anon

I thought C 1 just went a broken 1.46 in the 200free. she can surely do a 1.56 relay split but swimming 200free individually will be unwise. She may have to take a cue from the likes of Coughlin and Trickett who did very well on relay duty ; case in point montreal 2005 and Melbourne 2007


World record to Australia.

Craig Lord

Thanks Just me: the split was 52.47.


Australia has too much talent, experience and depth but the USA team is on an upward trajectory so it will be closer than most people think. The Dutch for the bronze. Outside of the women’s 4 X 200 FS this relay is the simplest to predict.


Aussie girls are are unbackable favorites. Will break the world record.


Cate is never swimming a 200 give it up lads, not only that she wouldn’t go close to 1.56 don’t let a silly broken swim fool you. She had 3 minutes between the 50 & 100 so essentially she swam a 100. That’s like saying Cesar would go 1.44.

Bad Anon

more like Caesar going 1.46 the women’s equivalent of a 1.44 is probably a 1.54

Craig Lord

roy – for the same reason Sarah Sjostrom trains at altitude… endurance is not just about ‘endurance’ events


Barring illness/injury to either/both Campbells or someone “breaking”, AUS is unlikely to lose this one.

Even with a “3/4” line-up at 2014 Pan Pacs (Elmslie swimming a 53.72 leg in for McKeon); there was a 2 second margin over USA. Going on 2015 Nats times; the AUS line-up that Craig has listed above should be around 3.30 which is a 4sec gap at minimum for USA to bridge.

Not really seeing the US bridging much more than to a 3.32 at best. Craig is right in seeing any more than one, two at max, sub 53sec legs whereas AUS has reasonable expectations of 4 sub53’s or 3sub53’s and 1 sub52. Weitzel at this point is the realm of “maybes” and “hope for’s” which the same can be said for Manuel going sub 53 off the blocks. She may have swam 53.25 at relay lead-off at PP but her subsequent swims were all the other side of 53.5. It may happen but at this point there’s still a way to go.



McEvoy has always swum 200. McEvoy is in the same vein of Pieter VDH.

When did you ever see C1 swam a 200?

Many people (me included) predicted Magnussen to be able to swim 1:45 based on his incredible second 50, but he has not.

Meanwhile, C1’s strength is her first out-of-this-world 50 speed, not her second 50 although it is still incredible and faster than almost all other sprinters. C1 is slower than Sjostrom in second 50.

C1 in 200 relay? not going to happen.


Agree with aswimfan.. Mcevoy has PVH style.. but nowadays sprinting is a little different than from PVH time, it become almost a different sport the 50 and the field now is probably the deepest we ever saw.. so for guys who are good at 100/200 is now pretty much impossible to be able to medal on 50..


It seems everyone is talking about Australia vs US. I think it is overlooked that 3 out of the 4 Dutch swimmers are greatly improving this year, and that the times listed here will be greatly improved: Steenbergen improved 2 seconds within half a year and is clearly the future (but will they wait for Rio to actually spring her on the rest of the world?), Femke Heemskerk’s improvement is well-known, and Maud van der Meer is setting PRs too. Even with a non-optimal Ranomi, that will place them well ahead of all those untried US swimmers.

Craig Lord

Dutchinusa, not everyone: I clearly listed the Dutch prospects – but those don’t beat AUS this year unless AUS mess up badly.


Yes, certainly– I was more talking about the second place, and WAS pleasantly surprised you noticed Steenbergen’s progress. We’ll see what comes first: 15-year old Steenbergen’s sub-54, or the long-predicted but equally long-in-coming sub-53 of a U.S. swimmer. (Yes, I think Missy could be of that class, but think that it is also obvious that she, probably rightly, is not targeting the 100 free for a few years now.)


The Campbell sisters combo would be more than enough to take care Kromowidjojo-Heemskerk.
And any Schlanger/Elmslie/McKeon/Wilson /Seebohm combo would easily dispatch any Dutch combo.

It also not true that USA sprint swimmers are untested. We all know Missy is extremely tested and prevailed and ALWAYS delivered in relays. Vreeland has won NCAA, Olympics and Worlds relays. Manuel and Weitzel are fearless young swimmers, and Manuel is very much tested, in the final of Barcelona swimming progressively faster PBs, and swam PB leading off Pan Pacs relay.

If no catastrophe happens on the Aussies part, it will not be AUS vs USA or AUS vs. NED.
It is USA vs. NED for silver.

One thing that is against NED: due to the lack of depth, if one of their sprinters has off-day, then it’s all downhill for them. 2012 and 2013 proved this.

Craig Lord

I agree dutchinusa that usa’s bigger mission may well be to battle for next home


Thinking of it, if everyone is on form, I think it will be a tight race between USA vs. NED for silver.

Craig Lord

yes, aswimfan, most likely


And since Kromowidjojo is one of my favorite swimmers, I hope NED will win silver! 🙂

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