Swimming at the 2012 Summer Olympics

The swimming competitions at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London took place from 28 July to 4 August at the Aquatics Centre. The open-water competition took place from 9 to 10 August in Hyde Park.[1]

Swimming
at the Games of the XXX Olympiad
VenueAquatics Centre (pool)
Hyde Park (open water)
Dates28 July – 4 August 2012 (pool)
9–10 August (open water)
Competitors900 (pool), 50 (open water) from 166 nations

Swimming featured 34 events (17 male, 17 female), including two 10 km open-water marathons in Hyde Park's Serpentine Lake. The remaining 32 were contested in a 50 m long course pool within the Olympic Park.

United States claimed a total of 31 medals (16 golds, 9 silver, and 6 bronze) in the leaderboard to maintain its supremacy as the most successful nation in swimming.[2] Brought by an unprecedented sporting domination, Michael Phelps emerged as the most decorated Olympian of all time after winning six more medals at these Games to bring his total after the 2012 games to 22 (18 golds, 2 silver, and 2 bronze).[3][4] Battling against the Americans for an overall medal count, China mounted to an unexpected second-place effort on the leaderboard with a tally of 10 medals (five golds, three silver, and bronze) after striking a superb double from Sun Yang in long-distance freestyle (both 400 and 1500 m) and Ye Shiwen in the individual medley (both 200 and 400 m).[5] Meanwhile, France ended on a spectacular fashion in third spot with a total of seven medals (four golds, two silver, and one bronze), followed by the Netherlands with four, including two golds from Ranomi Kromowidjojo in sprint freestyle (both 50 and 100 m), and South Africa with three.[2]

For the first time since 1992, Australia delivered an underwhelming performance with only a single triumph in the freestyle relay, but managed to bring home a total of ten medals.[6] After not winning a gold in swimming since 2004, Japan produced the most medals in the post-war era to build a tally of eleven (three silver and eight bronze).[7]

In the post-techsuit era, a total of nine world records and twenty five Olympic records were set during the competition.

Events

Similar to the program's format in 2008, swimming featured a total of 34 events (17 each for men and women) including two 10 km open-water marathons. The following events were contested (all pool events were long course, and distances are in metres unless stated):

Schedule

Similar to the previous Olympics since 2000, with the exception of 2008, swimming program schedule occurred in two segments. For the pool events, prelims were held in the morning, with semifinals and final in the following evening session.

Legend
Key H ½ F TF
Value Heats Semifinals Final Timed final

M = Morning session, E = Evening session

Men[8]
Date →Jul 28Jul 29Jul 30Jul 31Aug 1Aug 2Aug 3Aug 4Aug 10
Event ↓MEMEMEMEMEMEMEMEME
50 m freestyleH½F
100 m freestyleH½F
200 m freestyleH½F
400 m freestyleHF
1500 m freestyleHF
100 m backstrokeH½F
200 m backstrokeH½F
100 m breaststrokeH½F
200 m breaststrokeH½F
100 m butterflyH½F
200 m butterflyH½F
200 m individual medleyH½F
400 m individual medleyHF
4×100 m freestyle relayHF
4×200 m freestyle relayHF
4×100 m medley relayHF
10 km open waterF
Women[8]
Date →Jul 28Jul 29Jul 30Jul 31Aug 1Aug 2Aug 3Aug 4Aug 9
Event ↓MEMEMEMEMEMEMEMEME
50 m freestyleH½F
100 m freestyleH½F
200 m freestyleH½F
400 m freestyleHF
800 m freestyleHF
100 m backstrokeH½F
200 m backstrokeH½F
100 m breaststrokeH½F
200 m breaststrokeH½F
100 m butterflyH½F
200 m butterflyH½F
200 m individual medleyH½F
400 m individual medleyHF
4×100 m freestyle relayHF
4×200 m freestyle relayHF
4×100 m medley relayHF
10 km open waterF

Qualification

FINA By-Law BL 9.3.6.4 (swimming) and BL 9.3.7.5.3 (open water) lays out the qualification procedures for the "Swimming" competition at the Olympics.[9] Each country is allowed to enter up to two swimmers per individual event (provided they qualify), and one entry per relay; and a country may not have more than 26 males and 26 females (52 total) on its team.

Swimming – individual events

On 11 November 2010, FINA posted the qualifying times for individual events for the 2012 Olympics.[10] The time standards consist of two time standards, an "Olympic Qualifying Time" and an "Olympic invitation time". Each country was able to enter up to two swimmers per event, provided both swimmers met the (faster) qualifying time. A country was able to enter one swimmer per event that met the invitation standard. Any swimmer who met the "qualifying" time was entered in the event for the Games; a swimmer meeting the "invitation" standard was eligible for entry, and their entry was allotted/filled in by ranking.

If a country has no swimmers meeting either qualifying standard, it may enter one male and one female. A country that does not receive an allocation spot but has at least one swimmer who meets a qualifying standard may enter the swimmer with the highest ranking.

Swimming – relay events

Each relay event featured 16 teams, composed of:

  • 12: the top-12 finishers at the 2011 World Championships in each relay event.
  • 4: the 4 fastest non-qualified teams, based on times in the 15-months preceding the Olympics.

Open-water swimming

The men's and women's 10 km races at the 2012 Olympics each featured 25 swimmers:

  • 10: the top-10 finishers in the 10 km races at the 2011 World Championships
  • 9: the top-9 finishers at the 2012 Olympic Marathon Swim Qualifier (8–9 June 2012 in Setúbal, Portugal[11]).
  • 5: one representative from each FINA continent (Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania). (These were selected based on the finishes at the qualifying race in Setúbal.)
  • 1: from the host nation (Great Britain) if not qualified by other means. If Great Britain already had a qualifier in the race, this spot was allocated back into the general pool from the 2012 qualifying race.

Participating nations

FINA announced in early July 2012 that 631 athletes from 166 nations would compete in swimming events at the 2012 Olympics (note: all nations qualified for the 10 km races also had at least 1 swimmer qualified for the pool portion). 59 nations qualified via the A cut (OQT), 12 via the B cut (OST) and 95 via Universality.[12] Brunei, Central African Republic, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Togo, and Tonga made their official debut in swimming. Meanwhile, Grenada, Iraq, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines returned to the sport after an eight-year absence. Nations with swimmers at the Games are (team size in parentheses):

Medal summary

RankNationGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1 United States (USA)169631
2 China (CHN)52310
3 France (FRA)4217
4 Netherlands (NED)2114
5 South Africa (RSA)2103
6 Hungary (HUN)2013
7 Australia (AUS)16310
8 Tunisia (TUN)1012
9 Lithuania (LTU)1001
10 Japan (JPN)03811
11 Russia (RUS)0224
12 Belarus (BLR)0202
 South Korea (KOR)0202
 Spain (ESP)0202
15 Canada (CAN)0123
 Great Britain (GBR)0123
17 Brazil (BRA)0112
18 Germany (GER)0101
19 Italy (ITA)0011
Totals (19 nations)343632102

Note: There were ties for silver in the men's 200 m freestyle and men's 100 m butterfly events.

Results

Men's events

Event Gold Silver Bronze
50 m freestyle
Florent Manaudou
 France
21.34 Cullen Jones
 United States
21.54 César Cielo
 Brazil
21.59
100 m freestyle
Nathan Adrian
 United States
47.52 James Magnussen
 Australia
47.53 Brent Hayden
 Canada
47.80
200 m freestyle
Yannick Agnel
 France
1:43.14 NR Sun Yang
 China
Park Tae-Hwan
 South Korea
1:44.93 NR
1:44.93
Not awarded
as there was a tie for silver.
400 m freestyle
Sun Yang
 China
3:40.14 OR, AS Park Tae-Hwan
 South Korea
3:42.06 Peter Vanderkaay
 United States
3:44.69
1500 m freestyle
Sun Yang
 China
14:31.02 WR Ryan Cochrane
 Canada
14:39.63 AM Oussama Mellouli
 Tunisia
14:40.31
100 m backstroke
Matt Grevers
 United States
52.16 OR Nick Thoman
 United States
52.92 Ryosuke Irie
 Japan
52.97
200 m backstroke
Tyler Clary
 United States
1:53.41 OR Ryosuke Irie
 Japan
1:53.78 Ryan Lochte
 United States
1:53.94
100 m breaststroke
Cameron van der Burgh
 South Africa
58.46 WR Christian Sprenger
 Australia
58.93 Brendan Hansen
 United States
59.49
200 m breaststroke
Dániel Gyurta
 Hungary
2:07.28 WR Michael Jamieson
 Great Britain
2:07.43 NR Ryo Tateishi
 Japan
2:08.29
100 m butterfly
Michael Phelps
 United States
51.21 Chad le Clos
 South Africa
Yevgeny Korotyshkin
 Russia
51.44 Not awarded
as there was a tie for silver.
200 m butterfly
Chad le Clos
 South Africa
1:52.96 AF Michael Phelps
 United States
1:53.01 Takeshi Matsuda
 Japan
1:53.21
200 m individual medley
Michael Phelps
 United States
1:54.27 Ryan Lochte
 United States
1:54.90 László Cseh
 Hungary
1:56.22
400 m individual medley
Ryan Lochte
 United States
4:05.18 Thiago Pereira
 Brazil
4:08.86 =NR Kosuke Hagino
 Japan
4:08.94 AS
4 × 100 m freestyle relay
 France (FRA)
Amaury Leveaux (48.13)
Fabien Gilot (47.67)
Clément Lefert (47.39)
Yannick Agnel (46.74)
Alain Bernard[a]
Jérémy Stravius[a]
3:09.93  United States (USA)
Nathan Adrian (47.89)
Michael Phelps (47.15)
Cullen Jones (47.60)
Ryan Lochte (47.74)
Jimmy Feigen[a]
Matt Grevers[a]
Ricky Berens[a]
Jason Lezak[a]
3:10.38  Russia (RUS)
Andrey Grechin (48.57)
Nikita Lobintsev (47.39)
Vladimir Morozov (47.85)
Danila Izotov (47.60)
Yevgeny Lagunov[a]
Sergey Fesikov[a]
3:11.41
4 × 200 m freestyle relay
 United States (USA)
Ryan Lochte (1:45.15)
Conor Dwyer (1:45.23)
Ricky Berens (1:45.27)
Michael Phelps (1:44.05)
Charlie Houchin[a]
Matt McLean[a]
Davis Tarwater[a]
6:59.70  France (FRA)
Amaury Leveaux (1:46.70)
Grégory Mallet (1:46.83)
Clément Lefert (1:46.00)
Yannick Agnel (1:43.24)
Jérémy Stravius[a]
7:02.77 NR  China (CHN)
Hao Yun (1:47.12)
Li Yunqi (1:46.46)
Jiang Haiqi (1:47.17)
Sun Yang (1:45.55)
Lü Zhiwu[a]
Dai Jun[a]
7:06.30
4 × 100 m medley relay
 United States (USA)
Matt Grevers (52.58)
Brendan Hansen (59.19)
Michael Phelps (50.73)
Nathan Adrian (46.85)
Nick Thoman[a]
Eric Shanteau[a]
Tyler McGill[a]
Cullen Jones[a]
3:29.35  Japan (JPN)
Ryosuke Irie (52.92)
Kosuke Kitajima (58.64)
Takeshi Matsuda (51.20)
Takuro Fujii (48.50)
3:31.26  Australia (AUS)
Hayden Stoeckel (53.71)
Christian Sprenger (59.05)
Matt Targett (51.60)
James Magnussen (47.22)
Brenton Rickard[a]
Tommaso D'Orsogna[a]
3:31.58
10 km open water
Oussama Mellouli
 Tunisia
1:49:55.1 Thomas Lurz
 Germany
1:49:58.5 Richard Weinberger
 Canada
1:50:00.3

AF African record | AM Americas record | AS Asian record | ER European record | OC Oceania record | OR Olympic record | WJR World Junior record | WR World record
NR National record (Any world record is necessarily also an Olympic, area, and national record. Area records (for continental regions) are also national records.)

a Swimmers who participated in the heats only and received medals.

Women's events

Event Gold Silver Bronze
50 m freestyle
Ranomi Kromowidjojo
 Netherlands
24.05 OR Aliaksandra Herasimenia
 Belarus
24.28 NR Marleen Veldhuis
 Netherlands
24.39
100 m freestyle
Ranomi Kromowidjojo
 Netherlands
53.00 OR Aliaksandra Herasimenia
 Belarus
53.38 Tang Yi
 China
53.44
200 m freestyle
Allison Schmitt
 United States
1:53.61 OR, AM Camille Muffat
 France
1:55.58 Bronte Barratt
 Australia
1:55.81
400 m freestyle
Camille Muffat
 France
4:01.45 OR Allison Schmitt
 United States
4:01.77 AM Rebecca Adlington
 Great Britain
4:03.01
800 m freestyle
Katie Ledecky
 United States
8:14.63 AM Mireia Belmonte García
 Spain
8:18.76 NR Rebecca Adlington
 Great Britain
8:20.32
100 m backstroke
Missy Franklin
 United States
58.33 AM Emily Seebohm
 Australia
58.68 Aya Terakawa
 Japan
58.83 AS
200 m backstroke
Missy Franklin
 United States
2:04.06 WR Anastasia Zuyeva
 Russia
2:05.92 Elizabeth Beisel
 United States
2:06.55
100 m breaststroke
Rūta Meilutytė
 Lithuania
1:05.47 Rebecca Soni
 United States
1:05.55 Satomi Suzuki
 Japan
1:06.46
200 m breaststroke
Rebecca Soni
 United States
2:19.59 WR Satomi Suzuki
 Japan
2:20.72 =AS Yuliya Yefimova
 Russia
2:20.92 EU
100 m butterfly
Dana Vollmer
 United States
55.98 WR Lu Ying
 China
56.87 Alicia Coutts
 Australia
56.94
200 m butterfly
Jiao Liuyang
 China
2:04.06 OR Mireia Belmonte García
 Spain
2:05.25 NR Natsumi Hoshi
 Japan
2:05.48
200 m individual medley
Ye Shiwen
 China
2:07.57 OR, AS Alicia Coutts
 Australia
2:08.15 Caitlin Leverenz
 United States
2:08.95
400 m individual medley
Ye Shiwen
 China
4:28.43 WR Elizabeth Beisel
 United States
4:31.27 Li Xuanxu
 China
4:32.91
4 × 100 m freestyle relay
 Australia (AUS)
Alicia Coutts (53.90)
Cate Campbell (53.19)
Brittany Elmslie (53.41)
Melanie Schlanger (52.65)
Emily Seebohm[b]
Yolane Kukla[b]
Libby Trickett[b]
3:33.15 OR  Netherlands (NED)
Inge Dekker (54.67)
Marleen Veldhuis (53.80)
Femke Heemskerk (53.39)
Ranomi Kromowidjojo (51.93)
Hinkelien Schreuder[b]
3:33.79  United States (USA)
Missy Franklin (53.52)
Jessica Hardy (53.53)
Lia Neal (53.65)
Allison Schmitt (53.54)
Amanda Weir[b]
Natalie Coughlin[b]
3:34.24 AM
4 × 200 m freestyle relay
 United States (USA)
Missy Franklin (1:55.96)
Dana Vollmer (1:56.02)
Shannon Vreeland (1:56.85)
Allison Schmitt (1:54.09)
Lauren Perdue[b]
Alyssa Anderson[b]
7:42.92 OR, AM  Australia (AUS)
Bronte Barratt (1:55.76)
Melanie Schlanger (1:55.62)
Kylie Palmer (1:56.91)
Alicia Coutts (1:56.12)
Brittany Elmslie[b]
Angie Bainbridge[b]
Jade Neilsen[b]
Blair Evans[b]
7:44.41  France (FRA)
Camille Muffat (1:55.51)
Charlotte Bonnet (1:57.78)
Ophélie-Cyrielle Étienne (1:58.05)
Coralie Balmy (1:56.15)
Margaux Farrell[b]
Mylène Lazare[b]
7:47.49 NR
4 × 100 m medley relay
 United States (USA)
Missy Franklin (58.50)
Rebecca Soni (1:04.82)
Dana Vollmer (55.48)
Allison Schmitt (53.25)
Rachel Bootsma[b]
Breeja Larson[b]
Claire Donahue[b]
Jessica Hardy[b]
3:52.05 WR  Australia (AUS)
Emily Seebohm (59.01)
Leisel Jones (1:06.06)
Alicia Coutts (56.41)
Melanie Schlanger (52.54)
Brittany Elmslie[b]
3:54.02  Japan (JPN)
Aya Terakawa (58.99)
Satomi Suzuki (1:05.96)
Yuka Kato (57.36)
Haruka Ueda (53.42)
3:55.73
10 km open water
Éva Risztov
 Hungary
1:57:38.2 Haley Anderson
 United States
1:57:38.6 Martina Grimaldi
 Italy
1:57:41.8

AF African record | AM Americas record | AS Asian record | ER European record | OC Oceania record | OR Olympic record | WJR World Junior record | WR World record
NR National record (Any world record is necessarily also an Olympic, area, and national record. Area records (for continental regions) are also national records.)

b Swimmers who participated in the heats only and received medals.

Olympic and world records broken

Men

EventDateRoundNameNationalityTimeRecordDay
Men's 400 m freestyle 28 JulyFinalSun Yang China3:40.14OR1
Men's 100 m breaststroke 28 JulySemifinalCameron van der Burgh South Africa58.83OR1
Men's 100 m breaststroke 29 JulyFinalCameron van der Burgh South Africa58.46WR2
Men's 100 m backstroke 30 JulyFinalMatt Grevers United States52.16OR3
Men's 200 m breaststroke 1 AugustFinalDániel Gyurta Hungary2:07.28WR5
Men's 200 m backstroke 2 AugustFinalTyler Clary United States1:53.41OR6
Men's 1500 m freestyle 4 AugustFinalSun Yang China14:31.02WR8

Women

EventDateRoundNameNationalityTimeRecordDay
Women's 100 m butterfly 28 JulyHeatsDana Vollmer United States56.25OR1
Women's 400 m individual medley 28 JulyFinalYe Shiwen China4:28.43WR1
Women's 4 × 100 m freestyle relay 28 JulyFinalAlicia Coutts (53.90)
Cate Campbell (53.19)
Brittany Elmslie (53.41)
Melanie Schlanger (52.65)
 Australia3:33.15OR1
Women's 100 m backstroke 29 JulyHeatsEmily Seebohm Australia58.23OR2
Women's 100 m butterfly 29 JulyFinalDana Vollmer United States55.98WR2
Women's 400 m freestyle 29 JulyFinalCamille Muffat France4:01.45OR2
Women's 200 m individual medley 30 JulySemifinalYe Shiwen China2:08.39OR3
Women's 200 m freestyle 31 JulyFinalAllison Schmitt United States1:53.61OR4
Women's 200 m individual medley 31 JulyFinalYe Shiwen China2:07.57OR4
Women's 100 m freestyle 1 AugustSemifinalRanomi Kromowidjojo Netherlands53.05OR5
Women's 200 m butterfly 1 AugustFinalJiao Liuyang China2:04.06OR5
Women's 200 m breaststroke 1 AugustSemifinalRebecca Soni United States2:20.00WR5
Women's 4 × 200 m freestyle relay 1 AugustFinalMissy Franklin (1:55.96)
Dana Vollmer (1:56.02)
Shannon Vreeland (1:56.85)
Allison Schmitt (1:54.09)
 United States7:42.92OR5
Women's 200 m breaststroke 2 AugustFinalRebecca Soni United States2:19.59WR6
Women's 100 m freestyle 2 AugustFinalRanomi Kromowidjojo Netherlands53.00OR6
Women's 200 m backstroke 3 AugustFinalMissy Franklin United States2:04.06WR7
Women's 50 m freestyle 4 AugustFinalRanomi Kromowidjojo Netherlands24.05OR8
Women's 4 × 100 m medley relay 4 AugustFinalMissy Franklin (58.50)
Rebecca Soni (1:04.82)
Dana Vollmer (55.48)
Allison Schmitt (53.25)
 United States3:52.05WR8
  • All world records (WR) are subsequently Olympic records (OR).

Derya Büyükuncu and Lars Frölander were the first swimmers to participate in six consecutive Olympic Games (1992-2012).

Controversies

In the women's 400-metre individual medley, Chinese Ye Shiwen won in a world-record time of 4:28.43. After the race, Ye had allegations against her suggesting the use of drugs that drew comment from the International Olympic Committee and FINA who defended Ye. Ye has never tested positive of any performance-enhancing drugs. Some claim the accusations were a result of xenophobia towards the Chinese.

In the final of the 100-metre breaststroke, South African Cameron van der Burgh won in a world-record time of 58.46, bettering the previous record of 58.58 held by Brenton Rickard of Australia. After the race however, underwater camera footage showed winner van der Burgh did three illegal butterfly kicks on the underwater pullout (rules allow for one kick).[13] Van der Burgh later admitted to the illegal move and justified the act by saying if he was not doing it, "you are falling behind or giving yourself a disadvantage."[14]

Some of the Olympic medalists in London:

References

  1. "Olympic sports: Swimming". London 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2010.
  2. Adrega, Pedro; Chiarello, Sarah (4 August 2012). "Swimming day 8 – USA end on a high note, Phelps retires with 22 medals!". London 2012. FINA. Archived from the original on 15 January 2014. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
  3. "2012 London Olympics: Michael Phelps Leads All Swimmers With Six Medals". Swimming World Magazine. 5 August 2012. Archived from the original on 4 October 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
  4. Nye, James (3 July 2013). "Greatest Olympian of all time bows out with gold: Michael Phelps wins 18th race as U.S. swim team dominates last day in the pool". Mail Online. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
  5. Tan, Jingjing (3 July 2013). "Great breakthrough for Chinese swimming in Olympic pool". Xinhua News Agency. Retrieved 5 August 2012.
  6. Hoy, Greg (3 July 2013). "Swimmers outraged over pre-Games treatment". ABC News Australia. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
  7. Akutsu, Atsushi (3 July 2013). "Olympics/Swimming: Japan fails to strike gold but medal haul points to bright future". The Asahi Shimbun. Archived from the original on 15 August 2012. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  8. "Swimming: Results and Schedule". London 2012. NBC Olympics. Archived from the original on 3 July 2013. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
  9. "FINA By Law 9". London 2012. FINA. Archived from the original on 18 June 2010. Retrieved 17 December 2010.
  10. "764 Qualifying times for London Olympic Games 2012". London 2012. FINA. Archived from the original on 3 December 2010. Retrieved 17 December 2010.
  11. "FINA Press Release 2010–79: FINA Bureau Meeting in Dubai (UAE)". London 2012. FINA. 14 December 2010. Archived from the original on 5 March 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2010.
  12. "London 2012 – Swimming – Qualified Swimmers". London 2012. FINA. 6 July 2012. Archived from the original on 1 July 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  13. "Illegal Triple-Dolphin Kicks Seen in World Record Breaststroke Swim". SwimSwam. 31 July 2011. Archived from the original on 5 October 2012. Retrieved 8 October 2012.
  14. "South African Cameron van der Burgh admits using illegal dolphin kicks to win gold medal". The Australian. 4 August 2012. Retrieved 8 October 2012.

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