Swimming Day 8 roundup: Dressel breaks 100m butterfly world record

Posted at 8:53 PM, Jul 30, 2021

The two top stars in the sport of swimming, Caeleb Dressel and Katie Ledecky, shined their brightest on Day 8 of the Tokyo Olympics, accomplishing a pair of historic feats in the pool.

Dressel lowered his own world record in his signature 100m butterfly event, winning gold, while Ledecky became just the fourth swimmer to ever win the same event at three straight Olympics.

Relive each moment from Saturday's finals session below.

Men's 100m Butterfly, Final


Caeleb Dressel broke his own men's 100m butterfly world record en route to winning is second individual gold medal — his third overall — at the Tokyo Olympics.

Dressel touched first in 49.45, lowering his mark set at the 2019 world championships by .05.

Dressel got off the blocks in .60, the quickest reaction time of the heat. He then took at .65 lead over Hungary's Kristof Milak at the turn and beat the world record line coming home to set the all-time mark.

Milak took silver as Switzerland's Noe Ponti took bronze

The 100 fly final was the first of three events Dressel is scheduled to race in Saturday's finals session. In the span of just over 70 minutes, he will also race the semifinals of the 50m freestyle and participate in the mixed medley relay for the United States.

Women's 200m Backstroke, Final


Australia's Kaylee McKeown completed a sweep of the women's backstroke events at the Tokyo Olympics, winning the 200 back in 2:04.68.

McKeown closed a gap of 0.69 in the final 50 meters to overtake Canada's Kylie Masse, who took silver.

The other Aussie in the final, Emily Seebohm grabbed bronze as both American's, Ryan White and Phoebe Bacon, took fourth and fifth, respectively.

SEE MORE: Australia's McKeown takes gold in 200m backstroke

Women's 800m Freestyle, Final


Katie Ledecky completed a historic Olympic three-peat in the women's 800, beating out rival Ariarne Titmus to win her seventh Olympic gold medal.

Italy's Simona Quadarella finished in the bronze medal position, narrowly beating out 15-year-old American Katie Grimes

Ledecky got out quickly in front of Titmus then slowly built up a lead of 2.43 at the 700-meter mark. Titmus' signature closing ability was on display as she cut the deficit nearly in half, but could not unseat Ledecky.

After the race, Ledecky confirmed she would continue her career with sights set on the Paris 2024 Olympics, and potentially Los Angeles 2028.

SEE MORE: Ledecky holds off Titmus for 800m freestyle three-peat

Men's 50m Freestyle, semifinal


Less than an hour after breaking the 100 fly world record, Dressel dropped the fastest time in splash and dash to qualify as the top seeded swimmer for the final. He went 21.42.

Frenchman Florent Manaudou, the 2012 Olympic gold medalist, won the first semifinal in 21.53, the closest time to Dressel's.

American Michael Andrew tied with Great Britain's Ben Proud at 21.67 to advance joint-fifth.

Women's 50m Freestyle, Semifinals


A stacked field of female sprinters is through to the 50 free final.

2019 world champion and world record holder Sarah Sjostrom, 2016 Olympic champion Pernille Blume, 2012 Olympic champion Ranomi Kromowidjojo and perennial sprint contender Cate Campbell will all race a marquee final, though it's breakout star Emma McKeon who qualified first in 24.00.

Abbey Weitzeil swam well in her semifinal, qualifying fourth. Four-time Olympic medalist Simone Manuel missed the final, finishing in a tie for 11th overall.

SEE MORE: U.S.' Manuel sixth in 50m free semi, Weitzel heads to final

Mixed 4x100m Medley Relay, Final


In a fascinating debut for the first mixed-gender swimming event in Olympic history, Great Britain took the gold medal in world record time thanks in large part to an x-factor breaststroke leg from Adam Peaty.

Peaty swam his leg in 56.78 as Team GB lowered the world record to 3:37.58.

China followed 1.28 later for the silver as Australia took bronze.

The United States, the strategic outliers of the race, finished fifth in 3:40.58. The U.S. was the only team to tab a woman, Lydia Jacoby, for the breaststroke leg and man, Dressel, for the anchor freestyle leg.

During her swim, Jacoby's goggles became dislodged off her eyes, though it did not slow her down significantly as she completed her leg just .14 slower than her gold medal-winning 100m breaststroke final time.

SEE MORE: Great Britain wins mixed medley relay debut, U.S. fifth