Swim Poll of the Week: Who Wins the Women’s 100 Back in Tokyo?

swim-poll

This is the Swim Poll of the Week for Wednesday July 7, 2021, sponsored by Strechcordz Swim Training Products. In our last poll, we wanted to know: Who will win the women’s 100 backstroke in Tokyo?

The women’s 100 back will be one of the hotly contested races at this year’s Olympic Games. Since Katinka Hosszu won in 2016, the world record has been passed around four times since between four different women, and three of them will be in Tokyo this year at the Games.

Current world record holder Kaylee McKeown of Australia looks like the frontrunner in her first Olympics as she swam a 57.45 earlier this year at Australia’s Olympic Trials. McKeown will also be the heavy favorite in the 200 back, but the 100 will be her first event. Just five days shy of her 20th birthday, McKeown would be Australia’s first gold medalist in the event ever at the Olympics, as the last medal came from Emily Seebohm‘s silver in 2012.

Former world record holder Regan Smith will also be in her first Olympics for the United States as she was the first woman to break 58 seconds at the 2019 Worlds when she was a 57.57 on the first leg of the 4×100 medley relay. This will also be Smith’s first Olympic race as the Americans have won three of the last four gold medals in this event. Smith was a 57.92 at the U.S. Trials in June.

The two-time reigning World champ Kylie Masse of Canada is the lone swimmer from the Rio podium to return in Tokyo as she held the world record for a year that was ultimately broken in 2018 by Kathleen Baker. Masse won the 2017 World title in world record time and returned in 2019 to win the gold in Gwangju. Masse tied for bronze in her first Olympics in Rio, and has been known to be a clutch performer. Masse was a 57.70 in June to break 58 for the first time in her career as experience may bring her to the top of the podium.

Then there is European champion Kathleen Dawson of Great Britain. At age 23, she will make her Olympic debut in Tokyo and her 58.08 earlier this year put her as the fifth fastest woman all-time and is the fastest European ever in the event. Dawson won the continental title earlier this year in May and with all the attention on the aforementioned three, she may make her way to the top if someone falters.

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Who will win the women’s 100 backstroke in Tokyo?

Kaylee McKeown – 42%

Regan Smith – 34%

Kylie Masse – 14%

Kathleen Dawson – 10%


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