Team USA swimmer Caeleb Dressel more or less conquered one of the most grueling schedules of any Olympian during Saturday’s swimming events in Tokyo.
After some question regarding whether he would do so, Dressel anchored the U.S. mixed relay team in its event, which meant he would swim three events in a span of roughly 80 minutes. It was a feat that not even Michael Phelps achieved at a single Olympic games.
Caeleb Dressel anchors US mixed medley relay, so he has three swims in 80 minutes. Struggling to think of another swimmer who tripled at an Olympics. Phelps never did. Dressel has done it at worlds.
9:30pm ET 100 butterfly final
10:16 50 free semis
10:43 Mixed medley relay
— Nick Zaccardi (@nzaccardi) July 31, 2021
Remarkably, the schedule didn’t seem to take a toll on Dressel. He opened with the 100-meter butterfly and won gold, setting a world record in the process with a time of 49.45 seconds. Less than an hour later, he took part in the semifinals of the 50-meter freestyle. He finished first in that, too, qualifying for the final in that event on Sunday.
Dressel swam a solid anchor leg in the mixed medley relay, but the Americans were roughly eight seconds behind by the time he entered the pool. Team USA ended up finishing fifth in the event, denying Dressel the opportunity to win multiple Olympic medals in just over an hour.
Dressel already smashed one Olympic record during the games even before his world record swim on Saturday. He’ll have the chance to win another gold in the 50-meter final on Sunday in what should be a slightly more forgiving schedule.