Caleb Dressel won the 50-yard freestyle at the Men’s 2015 NCAA Championships.
During this race, he broke his National Age Group record of a 18.94.
At NCAA’s Dressel dropped 0.27 seconds, touching the wall with a 18.67. Despite this improvement in time, Dressel’s stroke count was the same:
|Strokes to 15 m||Strokes Last 8.6 yards|
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If Caleb’s stroke count didn’t change, how did he improve 0.27?
Dressel was ~0.2 seconds faster on his breakout. This improvement was also noted on his turn, breaking out ~0.1 seconds faster. These two areas of improvement steam from improving his underwater dolphin kicking, which he has clearly been improving, as his 100-yard butterfly has greatly improved in time throughout that year.
- With his NCAA win, many are suggesting Dressel can make the Olympics, but what of the high stroke rate.
Such a high stroke rate is hard to maintain during LCM, especially when other elite competitors have a distance per stroke (meters/stroke) of 1.2, compared to Dressel’s 1.07. Nonetheless, he should still improve 0.2 in his long course time, based off his start alone.