Olympics: Day Eight Finals Heat Sheets Posted; Five Finals Conclude Games

Jul 30, 2021; Tokyo, Japan; in the men's 1500m freestyle heats during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Tokyo Aquatics Centre. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports
Bobby Finke (top) and Mykhailo Romanchuk during the 1500 free prelims -- Photo Courtesy: Rob Schumacher/USA Today Sports

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Olympics: Day Eight Finals Heat Sheets Posted; Five Finals Conclude Games

The heat sheets have been posted for the last session of swimming at the Olympic Games. There is no prelims on day eight of the Games, so the swimmers, coaches and officials will have Saturday evening off. But the last session begins at 10:30 a.m. Tokyo time Sunday morning (9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT Saturdayin the USA), and the session will feature five finals: the men’s 50 freestyle, women’s 50 freestyle, men’s 1500 freestyle, women’s 400 medley relay and men’s 400 medley relay.

The men’s 50 freestyle final will see Caeleb Dressel as the top seed as he aims to win his third individual gold medal of this meet, which only two men (Mark Spitz and Michael Phelps) have ever achieved. He will be the strong favorite in this race, while 2012 Olympic champion Florent Manaudou is seeded second. Then, in the women’s 50 free final, Emma McKeon will be seeded first as she tries to add to the gold medal she won in the 100 free Friday. Defending gold medalist Pernille Blume and world-record holder Sarah Sjostrom are seeded second and third, respectively.

In the men’s 1500 freestyle, Ukraine’s Mykhailo Romanchuk is the top seed, just as he was in the 800 free, and three other men went under 14:50 — 800 free gold medalist Bobby Finke of the U.S., reigning world champion Florian Wellbrock of Germany and 2016 gold medalist Gregorio Paltrinieri of Italy. Expect the medals to come from that foursome.

Finally, the women’s and men’s medley relays will round out the Games. Canada owns the top seed by one hundredth over the United States, with Australia seeded third. Those three countries are expected to be those in medal contention, and the current projections are extremely close.

Finally, the United States men have never lost the 400 medley relay, but they qualified just seventh and will swim out of lane one in the final. But they will bring in a completely different quartet, and the race is expected to come between the Americans and Great Britain, which won the 2019 world title in the event.

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