Olympics: Mykahlio Romanchuk Top Seed in 800 Free National Record Bonanza

Jul 27, 2021; Tokyo, Japan; Robert Finke (USA) after the men's 800m freestyle heats during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Tokyo Aquatics Centre. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports
Robert Finke; Photo Courtesy: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

Editorial content for the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games coverage is sponsored by GMX7.
See full event coverage. Follow GMX7 on Instagram at @GMX7training #gmx7


Olympics: Mykahlio Romanchuk Top Seed in 800 Free National Record Bonanza

National records fell in abundance in the first men’s Olympic 800 free, led by Mykhalio Romanchuk of the Ukraine.

In all, five of the eight finalists downed national marks, plus a handful of others in the non-qualifiers for the first running of the 800 free on the Olympic stage. The three top finishers all came from the fourth heat of five, with Romanchuk, Germany’s Florian Wellbrock and American Robert Finke finishing within 1.5 seconds of each other.

Finke took the initiative in the heat. He eventually got dragged back by Romanchuk and Wellbrock, but he still had plenty to get to the final. All three set national records, Romancuk and Wellbrock improving on theirs. Finke took down Michael McBroom’s record from 2013, which had stood at 7:43.60.

“That is a new national record, so I am very happy,” Romanchuk said. “We’ll see what will happen in two days’ time in the final.”

Felix Aubock swam away from the field in the final heat to set an Austrian record of 7:45.73 and grab the fourth seed. Guilherme Costa of Brazil is fifth with a national record of 7:45.73. Both men already held their national records.

Gregorio Paltrinieri snuck into the final’s final spot, with the Italian going 7:47.73. Ahmed Hafnaoui, the 400 free champ, tied for 10th in 7:49.14. That tied with Viktor Johansson, who set a Swedish record from the first heat. Michael Brinegar, the other American, landed 17th.

Men’s 800 Freestyle

  • World record: Zhang Lin, China, 7:32.12 (2009)
  • Olympic record: N/A
  1. Mykhailo Romanchuk, Ukraine, 7:41.28
  2. Florian Wellbrock, Germany, 7:41.77
  3. Robert Finke, United States, 7:42.72
  4. Felix Aubock, Austria, 7:45.73
  5. Guilherme Costa, Brazil, 7:46.09
  6. Jack McLoughlin, Australian, 7:46.94
  7. Serhii Frolov, Ukraine, 7:47.67
  8. Gregorio Paltrineri, Italy, 7:47.73
Notify of

Welcome to our community. We invite you to join our discussion. Our community guidelines are simple: be respectful and constructive, keep on topic, and support your fellow commenters. Commenting signifies that you agree to our Terms of Use

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x