Swimming at the 2012 Summer Olympics – Men's 200 metre freestyle
|Men's 200 metre freestyle
at the Games of the XXX Olympiad
|Venue||London Aquatics Centre|
|Date||July 29, 2012 (heats &
July 30, 2012 (final)
|Competitors||41 from 29 nations|
|Swimming at the
2012 Summer Olympics
After overhauling the Americans in the 4x100 freestyle relay with a stunning anchor leg, France's Yannick Agnel pulled away from a star-studded field by over a full body length to earn his second Olympic gold in swimming at these Games. Billed as the "Race of the Century", he came up again with a spectacular swim on the final stretch to hit the wall first in 1:43.14, posting a textile best in the process and moving rapidly to third in the world's all time rankings. Meanwhile, South Korea's Park Tae-Hwan and China's Sun Yang tied for the silver medal in a matching time of 1:44.93, following a dramatic rivalry in the 400 m freestyle final two days earlier.
U.S. swimmer Ryan Lochte, the reigning world champion, missed the podium by 11-hundredths of a second with a fourth-place time in 1:45.04. Germany's world-record holder Paul Biedermann faded down the stretch to pick up a fifth spot in 1:45.53, edging out British home favorite Robbie Renwick by a full body length with a highly-creditable, sixth-place effort (1:46.53). Australia's Thomas Fraser-Holmes (1:46.93) and Russia's Danila Izotov (1:47.75) also vied for an Olympic medal to round out the stellar championship field.
Notable swimmers missed out the final roster featuring Lochte's teammate Ricky Berens, who replaced Michael Phelps to fill out the slot for the Americans but placed ninth (1:46.87); and Switzerland's Dominik Meichtry, a sixth-place finalist in Beijing four years earlier, who finished fifteenth in the semifinals (1:48.25).
Prior to this competition, the existing world and Olympic records were as follows.
|World record||Paul Biedermann (GER)||1:42.00||Rome, Italy||28 July 2009|
|Olympic record||Michael Phelps (USA)||1:42.96||Beijing, China||12 August 2008|
|2||4||Ryan Lochte||United States||1:46.31||Q|
|3||3||Robbie Renwick||Great Britain||1:46.65||Q|
|5||6||Ricky Berens||United States||1:46.87|
|6||1||Brett Fraser||Cayman Islands||1:47.01|
|3||3||Park Tae-Hwan||South Korea||1:46.02||Q|
|3||Park Tae-Hwan||South Korea|
|4||2||Ryan Lochte||United States||1:45.04|
|6||1||Robbie Renwick||Great Britain||1:46.53|
- "Swimming: Results & Schedules". London 2012. NBC Olympics. 29 July 2012. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
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- Clarey, Christopher (30 July 2012). "Agnel Outduels Lochte Again as French Savor Early Success". New York Times. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "Agnel claims gold in 200m freestyle as Renwick trails home in sixth". Daily Mail. 30 July 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
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- "2012 London Olympics: Sun Yang, Yannick Agnel Post 1:45s to Lead Men's 200 Free Semis; Lochte 5th". Swimming World Magazine. 29 July 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- Dillman, Lisa (29 July 2009). "Suit case: German ends Phelps' reign". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- Jeffery, Nicole (29 July 2009). "Paul Biedermann beats Michael Phelps in 200m freestyle". The Courier-Mail. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "Phelps breaks 200 free world record by nearly a second". ESPN. 11 August 2008. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
- "Men's 200m Freestyle – Heats". London 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2012.