We've got a lot of Olympic swimming ahead of us, but we've already seen our first major upset.
Daiya Seto, the Japanese swimmer who was top seeded in the men's 400m individual medley, failed to qualify for the final in his heat on Saturday. The reigning world champion in the 400 and 200 IM missed qualifying for the final by .39, finishing 5th in his heat and 9th overall.
Seto was in lane 4 (which is the 4th one down from the top) and was leading after 350m. But during the freestyle in the final 50m, Seto couldn't keep up with the incredibly fast field. Most of the swimmers around him were able to find a final burst of speed to get them to the wall, but Seto ran out of gas.
— #TokyoOlympics (@NBCOlympics) July 24, 2021
Seto, who won bronze in the 400 IM at the 2016 Olympics, was the runaway favorite in this event. His entry time of 4:07.95 was the fastest by far, with no one else entering a time faster than 4:09. He'd even managed to turn in a competition time of 4:06.09 in early 2020.
But it wasn't meant to be on Saturday. Seto fell victim to an incredibly fast heat.
Worth noting how fast those 400 IM prelims were: six guys broke 4:10, and eighth place was 4:10.20. In 2016, only two prelim swimmers broke 4:10 and eighth was 4:13.55. Seto was the victim of a much tougher prelim round than in Rio. https://t.co/TjOT21d3O1
— Pat Forde (@ByPatForde) July 24, 2021
Seto isn't done at the Olympics, though. He's entered in the 200 IM, where he's seeded second overall behind American Michael Andrew.
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