| Event type

1,500 metres Freestyle, Men

Date25 – 26 July 1996
LocationGeorgia Tech Aquatic Center, Atlanta, Georgia
Participants34 from 26 countries

At the start of 1996 you could argue that Australia’s Kieren Perkins was the biggest “sure thing” of the entire swimming competitions. The 1992 champion had won every major title over the distance since Barcelona and also held the world record. Unfortunately for Perkins, the Olympic year had not been good to him and he had been beaten at the Australian trials over the distance and, additionally, had failed even to qualify for the 400 metres freestyle.

Even in the heats at Atlanta things looked bleak for the Australian as he only qualified for the final with 0.2 of a second to spare over the fifteen minute race. Perkins blamed his heat performance on an attempt to qualify with the least effort which had the negative effect of spoiling his body posture and slowing him down more than desired. He only made the final as the last qualifier.

Perkins put things to right in the final and, after taking the lead almost from the gun, sped ahead and was never troubled again. His time was 15 seconds off his own world record but still good enough to take a clear victory over his rivals. The silver medal was decided on the final touch where Perkins’ compatriot Daniel Kowalski beat Graeme Smith of Great Britain by a 20th of a second.

1Kieren PerkinsAUS15:21.42 (4 h5)14:56.40 (1)Gold
2Daniel KowalskiAUS15:12.55 (1 h4)15:02.43 (2)Silver
3Graeme SmithGBR15:14.81 (1 h3)15:02.48 (3)Bronze
4Emiliano BrembillaITA15:16.72 (2 h5)15:08.58 (4)
5Ryk NeethlingRSA15:19.98 (2 h3)15:14.63 (5)
6Masato HiranoJPN15:19.48 (3 h5)15:17.28 (6)
7Jörg HoffmannGER15:18.61 (2 h4)15:18.86 (7)
8Aleksey AkatyevRUS15:16.47 (1 h5)15:21.68 (8)
9Steffen ZesnerGER15:21.65 (5 h5)
10Paul PalmerGBR15:22.65 (3 h3)
11Luiz LimaBRA15:24.16 (3 h4)
12Peter WrightUSA15:25.43 (4 h4)
13Carlton BrunerUSA15:25.82 (4 h3)
14Aleksey ButseninRUS15:31.27 (5 h4)
15Ihor SnitkoUKR15:31.40 (5 h3)
16Torlarp SethsothornTHA15:40.04 (6 h4)
17Yann de FabriqueFRA15:40.49 (7 h4)
18Marco FormentiniITA15:41.14 (6 h5)
19Siarhei MikhnovetsBLR15:41.80 (1 h2)
20Ricardo MonasterioVEN15:42.39 (2 h2)
21Frederik HviidESP15:42.40 (6 h3)
22Hisato YasuiJPN15:43.66 (7 h5)
23Jacob CarstensenDEN15:43.75 (3 h2)
24Denys ZavhorodnyiUKR15:46.79 (7 h3)
25Lee Gyu-ChangKOR15:47.92 (8 h3)
26Agustín FiorilliARG15:51.85 (4 h2)
27Scott CameronNZL15:56.60 (5 h2)
28Igor MajcenSLO16:10.81 (8 h4)
29Ramón ValleHON16:14.76 (1 h1)
30Dimitrios ManganasGRE16:15.94 (6 h2)
31Pedro FerreiraPOR16:34.55 (7 h2)
32Hicham El-MasrySYR16:42.35 (8 h5)
33Hamid Reza KhaniIRI17:22.86 (2 h1)
34Rashid Salim Al-Ma'ShariOMA18:11.59 (3 h1)

Round One (25 July 1996)

Fastest eight advanced to the final.

Heat One

14Ramón ValleHON16:14.760.74
23Hamid Reza KhaniIRI17:22.860.86
35Rashid Salim Al-Ma'ShariOMA18:11.590.83

Heat Two

12Siarhei MikhnovetsBLR15:41.800.90
24Ricardo MonasterioVEN15:42.390.87
35Jacob CarstensenDEN15:43.750.85
47Agustín FiorilliARG15:51.850.85
53Scott CameronNZL15:56.600.82
66Dimitrios ManganasGRE16:15.940.81
71Pedro FerreiraPOR16:34.550.86

Heat Three

14Graeme SmithGBR15:14.810.83Q
27Ryk NeethlingRSA15:19.980.82Q
33Paul PalmerGBR15:22.650.84
45Carlton BrunerUSA15:25.820.87
56Ihor SnitkoUKR15:31.400.86
61Frederik HviidESP15:42.400.84
72Denys ZavhorodnyiUKR15:46.790.78
88Lee Gyu-ChangKOR15:47.920.74

Heat Four

14Daniel KowalskiAUS15:12.550.84Q
25Jörg HoffmannGER15:18.610.94Q
37Luiz LimaBRA15:24.160.90
43Peter WrightUSA15:25.430.84
56Aleksey ButseninRUS15:31.270.88
68Torlarp SethsothornTHA15:40.040.86
71Yann de FabriqueFRA15:40.490.82
82Igor MajcenSLO16:10.810.85

Heat Five

15Aleksey AkatyevRUS15:16.470.93Q
21Emiliano BrembillaITA15:16.720.96Q
32Masato HiranoJPN15:19.480.77Q
44Kieren PerkinsAUS15:21.420.89Q
56Steffen ZesnerGER15:21.651.03
63Marco FormentiniITA15:41.140.92
77Hisato YasuiJPN15:43.660.85
88Hicham El-MasrySYR16:42.350.82

Final (26 July 1996 — 20:41)

18Kieren PerkinsAUS14:56.400.84
24Daniel KowalskiAUS15:02.430.85
35Graeme SmithGBR15:02.480.98
46Emiliano BrembillaITA15:08.580.91
51Ryk NeethlingRSA15:14.630.87
67Masato HiranoJPN15:17.280.71
72Jörg HoffmannGER15:18.860.96
83Aleksey AkatyevRUS15:21.680.96