Rio 2016: swimmers who weren’t happy enough with a medal

Despite there is nothing more immediate than an Olympic medal to ensure you a spot in the athletes’ Olympus, what’s perfect to be remembered over the centuries as a piece of sport history? Probably, winning a medal and breaking some records as well.

There was plenty of records set in the swimming section alone.

Of course, the first one we all know is Michael-28-medals-Phelps. This American swimmer began climbing the Olympus hill a long time ago, at the Athens 2004 (what a bizarre coincidence!) games, winning 6 gold medals and 2 bronzes. Since that moment, every Olympic Games edition looked more like Christmas than a competition to the swimmer who kept on collecting gold gifts.

Phelps’ participation in Rio 2016 surprised his fans, since he announced his retirement from competitions back in London 2012. A few weeks ago though, after he’s broken the record number of medals won, Phelps announced his real retirement. Guess there were no more records to break for him!

However, sometimes it’s not a matter of how many medals you got. Sometimes even just one medal can be enough to be remembered. That’s the case of Singaporean swimmer Joseph Schooling. This 21-year-old athlete won the 100m butterfly gold medal (beating Michael Phelps and setting a Games record), becoming the first athlete in the country with such a result!

Also, Schooling is still very young and this path can only get better over the years. Surely though, he’s already broken a very big record and from now on, Singapore’s sporting history will have his name written in capital letters.

Coming back to the U.S, it’s the turn of Katie Ledecky. This swimmer is 19 years old and has already broken some records. She debuted in London 2012 when she was only 15 as the youngest U.S. swimming team member. Since that moment, she started to compete against herself, breaking world records that she had set before.

In Rio 2016, Katie made history in the 800m freestyle. Of course, she won the gold medal by shaving off the previous world record time (that she set one year ago) by 4 seconds. This girl has even had time to rest a bit while waiting for the arrival of the second and the third placed swimmers; basically, she swam alone during the entire race.

Sometimes, you can be remembered even due for funny moments. This is the case of Chinese swimmer Fu Yuanhui. This girl broke the internet with videos of her funny reactions after that she was informed by a journalist that she had won the bronze medal in the 100m backstroke, quoting that she didn’t “hold back” and had used up all of her “mystical powers”.


Fu’s facial expressions are very well known – this swimmer’s expressions were already portrayed in plenty of funny memes. Surely, she’s beaten the best record by winning everyone’s hearts!