The 200 Freestyle Relay Should Be In The Olympics

For a long time I’ve wondered why one specific event is not contested at the Olympic Games, or at the international level in general. I’m not a huge fan of comparing swimming events to track events, because I don’t believe they perfectly overlap, but in this case I just cant ignore it. 

Let’s start by talking about some of the events in track that generate the most buzz, have the highest viewership, and are just in general more exciting than others.

If you were to ask the general track and field fan who the most prominent figure in the sport would be the answers likely wouldn’t be unanimous, but they’d be close. Any names come to mind? Usain Bolt’s should. The 100m dash phenom (yes he runs the 200m as well, but let’s be real here) burst onto the scene smashing world records by a huge margin in what seemed like every meet he competed in. This 9.5-second race is high octane, quick, but still allows for some shifting in position and a breakaway victory. Swimming’s fastest race on the Olympic/International stage is double this race time with a world record just under 21 seconds. 

Now let me explain to you why the 200 freestyle relay should be contested on the world stage.

Let’s paint a quick picture…four of the “fastest” swimmers from each country swimming 50m with risky exchange times (time between hand touching wall and next relay participant leaving the block) with a packed crowd in the best shape of their life. Sounds terrible and not exciting at all right? Let’s break down a quick list of what I’d see being the most exciting races at the Olympic stage. We’ll do a top five.

  1. 200 freestyle relay

  2. 400 freestyle relay

  3. 200 medley relay

  4. 50 freestyle

  5. 100 freestyle

While your list might differ a bit, I bet there are some similarities, specifically in the relay department. Relays have created some of the most iconic swimming moments in the history of the sport, including the Jason Lezak comeback. Now, since swimmers are data obsessed let’s throw down some predictions about what we might see in the split department.

Leadoff splits should be pretty predictable and with the way swimming is trending we could see some big sub 21-second swims for the men and 23-mid for the women. For the more fun side of the predictions in this, the relay start splits. We could see people relay start to push the 20-second barrier with all of the stars and planets aligning, but reasonably speaking, I’d expect to see some people touching in the range of 20.3 to 20.4 for the men and for the women we could see the first 22-second split. The medley relay side of things gets a bit more interesting since we’re still trying to get stroke 50s to become a staple on the international stage and I’ll leave these splits up to the imagination.

Swimming’s come a long way since two-foot up starts, brief-only races, and slippery backstroke starts, but we’ve still got a long way to go. Definitely excited to see where the sport ends up in the next five, 10, and even 20 years.

Should Swimmers Be Subject To Underwater Officiating?

Officiating has been a growing topic in the sport over the past 10 years as rule changes and advancements in underwater video capabilities have continued. Being disqualified as a kid in a summer league meet is one of the most soul-crushing things a young swimmer can face, but we’re not here to talk about the summer league days… We’re here to talk about the fastest one percent of the sport.

Swimmers Are Nerds

If you haven’t realized it by now, swimmers are some of the nerdiest athletes in the world of sports. From the sets we do, the counting, the times we go, etc., etc., there’s a lot that goes into becoming a high-level swimmer, and a good portion of it comes down to being just plain nerdy. We’re going to break down the nerdiness of our sport into three categories, counting, data and more data.

Preview | Big Ten Men's Championship

What to know before the 2019 Big Ten Men's Swimming & Diving Championship

Preview | 2019 Big 12 Championship

When: Feb. 27 - Mar. 02, 2019

Preview | Big Ten Women's Championship

When: Feb. 20 - 23, 2019

FloSports to Live Stream 2019 Big 12 Winter and Spring Championships

AUSTIN, Texas — February 18, 2019 — Today, FloSports, the innovator in live digital sports and original content, and the Big 12 Conference announced that fans can access live and on-demand coverage of the Swimming and Diving Championship on, the Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field Championship on, the Wrestling Championship on, and the Softball Championship on

Swammers: When Should You Get Back In?

At the end of your career, it makes sense to step away from the pool for a bit. If you come back too quickly you might find yourself with your toes curled over the edge staring at the water for a good 10-15 minutes. You might build up the courage to jump back in with no expectations and swim a 25 just get out, like I did, or maybe you’ll just hit the hot tub. 

COMING SOON: Live Events Like Never Before

Prepare for a new immersive live experience that will transform the way you watch swimming. You shared your live stream dreams with us and we're making them all come true with fan-driven features that you've been craving.

Preview | OSU Vs. Pitt

What better way to start off a preview is to take a look at the most recent dual meet performances from each squad and pick out some swimmers to watch? Let’s do just that.