Swimming World Presents “GREAT SCOT(T)!…Scotland’s Duncan Scott Poised As An Olympic Threat”

SW July 2020 - Duncan Scott - Great Scott - Scotlands Duncan Scott Poised As An Olympic Threat

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GREAT SCOT(T)!…Scotland’s Duncan Scott Poised As An Olympic Threat

By David Rieder


Scotland’s Duncan Scott should be an Olympic medal threat next year in the 100 and 200 free and maybe even the 200 IM, and he will be a key cog for British 800 free and 400 medley relays with gold medal aspirations.

 

In a period of unprecedented international success for the British men’s swim team, Duncan Scott has been right at the heart of the successful surge, alongside breaststroke superstar Adam Peaty and fellow freestyler James Guy. And during his second FINA World Championships in Gwangju in 2019, Scott experienced a crushing setback, a monumental breakthrough and a full-scale international incident, covering the entire gamut of swimming-related emotions—all within one week in late July.

When Scott finished the 200 free final, none could have blamed him for a feeling of déjà vu. Two years earlier at the World Championships in Budapest, Scott swam a lifetime best of 1:45.16 in the semifinals to earn the top seed for the final, only to swim slower and finish a narrow fourth in the finals. In between World Championships appearances, he would capture gold in the event at the 2018 European Championships, and he finished the year ranked No. 2 in the world.

But in the Gwangju final, he never got going at full speed, and he couldn’t keep pace with the late surges of the top three finishers, Lithuania’s Danas Rapsys, China’s Sun Yang and Japan’s Katsuhiro Matsumoto. Scott finished 4-tenths back, tied with Russia’s Martin Malyutin at 1:45.63.

“It was a huge disappointment because I felt amazing in the semifinal,” Scott said. “I felt really positive going into it. Initially, I think you look at your time and obviously your placing as well, and I was gutted with both, to be honest. Joint fourth, and it wasn’t even a good time in joint fourth.”

But moments later, the scoreboard changed, and Rapsys was disqualified for movement on his start. That bumped Scott (and Malyutin) up to the bronze medal. And suddenly, the emotions swung: “I was delighted with my first Worlds individual medal… and a bronze one,” Scott said.

Even at that point, the evening was only getting started. As Sun climbed the top step of the podium to receive his gold, he shouted and pointed at Scott, and after receiving his medal on the awards platform, Scott refused to pose for photos with the other medalists. He congratulated both Malyutin and Matsumoto, but he would not acknowledge Sun. Scott was protesting Sun’s dismal record with the anti-doping system, likely believing that Sun did not deserve to be competing at all in Gwangju.

Sun had been previously suspended for an infraction in 2014, but the story was covered up until his surprisingly short three-month suspension had ended. And then, during a 2018 out-of-competition test, Sun questioned the credentials of his testers and ordered his security team to smash a blood sample he had already given.

However, FINA refused to penalize Sun for the 2018 incident, and although the World Anti-Doping Agency appealed that decision through the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the case would not be adjudicated until February 2020. Sun would end up receiving a massive eight-year ban from swimming, but in Gwangju, he was still free to compete. On the first day of the meet, Australia’s Mack Horton refused to take the medal stand after the 400 free in protest of his Chinese rival, and Scott followed suit in the 200.

Scott’s protest was silent, and he refused to acknowledge Sun’s taunts, even as an angry Sun got in his face and barked, “You loser. I am winner.” Scott simply smiled as the crowd cheered in approval of his actions. Other swimmers, including breaststroke superstar Peaty, proclaimed their approval, but Scott stayed mostly silent on his reasoning behind his actions. FINA ended up sending written warnings to both swimmers for “inadequate behavior” and “for bringing the aquatics sport and/or FINA into disrepute.”

Even so, Scott won a clear victory in the heart of public opinion. Most viewed his behavior as not only appropriate, but warranted, given Sun’s history. Since Sun received his ban, Scott has declined comment on the situation, but he did issue a statement that read: “I fully respect and support the decision that has been made and announced by the Court of Arbitration for Sport…. I believe in clean sport and a level playing field for all athletes, and I trust in CAS and WADA to uphold these values.”

To read more about Duncan Scott and he’s come to be considered such a threat,
Check out the full issue of Swimming World July 2020, available now!
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SW July 2020 - Duncan Scott - Heart of Britain's Successful Surge - Cover[PHOTO CREDIT: IAN MACNICOL]

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Swimming World Magazine July 2020 Issue

FEATURES

017 A NEW HOPE
by Dan D’Addona
The COVID-19 pandemic has swept across the globe and changed the lives of everyone in the world. Now, there is some light at the end of the tunnel as the world struggles to find normalcy again.

020 ISHOF: “CALLING ALL TROUBLEMAKERS”
by Bruce Wigo
Sprinters are a different breed of swimmer. They’re not just free spirits, but they seem to be rule breakers and troublemakers who also are catalysts for positive change. In the first of a two-part feature, Swimming World takes a look at the stories of two of the most well-known female sprinters who fit this image: Dawn Fraser and Eleanor Holm.

023 GREAT SCOT(T)
by David Rieder
Scotland’s Duncan Scott should be an Olympic medal threat next year in the 100 and 200 free and maybe even the 200 IM, and he will be a key cog for British 800 free and 400 medley relays with gold medal aspirations.

026 TAKEOFF TO TOKYO: A STAR OF SWIMMING…AND HOLLYWOOD
by John Lohn
The latest installment of our Takeoff to Tokyo series looks at the career of the legendary Johnny Weissmuller, one of the first stars in the sport, and then a Hollywood hero.

COACHING

012 SWIMMING TECHNIQUE CONCEPTS: THE VALUE OF HAND FORCE ANALYSIS: PART IV—FREESTYLE
by Rod Havriluk
The first three articles in this series (Part I—Butterfly, Part II—Backstroke and Part III—Breaststroke) presented information about the value of using hand force analysis to reinforce positive technique elements and identify limitations. The current article includes more general information about force analysis with a freestyle example.

014 AEROBIC OVERLOAD: VOLUME REVISITED (Part 2)
by Michael J. Stott
Last month, Swimming World examined the role of volume in aquatic training. This month, some of America’s most successful swimmers share how volume shaped their development.

042 Q&A WITH COACH TOM JOHNSON
by Michael J. Stott

044 HOW THEY TRAIN EMILY OVERHOLT AND MARKUS THORMEYER
by Michael J. Stott

TRAINING

011 DRYSIDE TRAINING: THE NEED FOR STRENGTH
by J.R. Rosania

JUNIOR SWIMMER

046 UP & COMERS: ZACH TOWER
by Shoshanna Rutemiller

COLUMNS & SPECIAL SECTIONS

008 A VOICE FOR THE SPORT

010 THE OFFICIAL WORD

019 DID YOU KNOW? NO TO TOPLESS BATHING; HIGH DIVING; AND FIRST FULLY AUTOMATIC ELECTRONIC TIMING SYSTEM

029 2020 AQUATIC DIRECTORY

041 DADS ON DECK

047 GUTTERTALK

048 PARTING SHOT

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