| Event type

200 metres Freestyle, Men

Date15 – 16 August 2004
LocationOlympiako Kentro Ugrou Stivou, Olympiako Athletiko Kentro Athinon Spiros Loues, Athina (Main Pool)
Participants59 from 53 countries

The 200 metres freestyle promised to be one of the most eagerly awaited events, not just of the swimming programme, but of the entire Athens Olympic programme and had gathered interest even from those with only a passing interest in the sport. The field for the race that had been billed as the swimming’s “Race of the Century” long in advance of the Games included some of the most recognisable names in modern swimming history. Reigning champion Pieter van den Hoogenband of the Netherlands was joined by newly crowned 400 m freestyle champion Ian Thorpe of Australia and two multiple World Champions in the shape of Michael Phelps and Grant Hackett. Such was the quality of the eight finalists that they would go to win a combined career total of 31 Olympic and 49 World Championship titles between them. Thorpe and van den Hoogenband had been rivals since before the Sydney Olympics whilst Phelps had established himself as a world star by dominating the 2003 World Championship although he had not contested this event at those championships.

Van den Hoogenband had upset Thorpe in front of an enthusiastic Australian crowd in 2000 and seemed to treat the early stages of the final as an extension of the race as he set a blistering sub world record pace to the 150 metre mark. This time though the Dutchman had misjudged his pacing and he faded towards the end. Thorpe’s 400 metre stamina brought him through to extract revenge for the defeat in Sydney whilst van den Hoogenband just had enough left to hold off Phelps for silver.

1Ian ThorpeAUS1:47.22 (1 h8)1:46.65 (1 h2)1:44.71 (1)Gold
2Pieter van den HoogenbandNED1:47.32 (2 h8)1:46.00 (1 h1)1:45.23 (2)Silver
3Michael PhelpsUSA1:48.43 (1 h6)1:47.08 (2 h2)1:45.32 (3)Bronze
4Klete KellerUSA1:47.97 (1 h7)1:47.28 (2 h1)1:46.13 (4)
5Grant HackettAUS1:48.90 (2 h7)1:47.61 (3 h2)1:46.56 (5)
6Rick SayCAN1:49.32 (2 h6)1:48.16 (5 h2)1:47.55 (6)
7Simon BurnettGBR1:48.68 (4 h8)1:47.72 (3 h1)1:48.02 (7)
8Emiliano BrembillaITA1:47.95 (3 h8)1:47.93 (4 h2)1:48.40 (8)
9Květoslav SvobodaCZE1:49.25 (5 h8)1:49.27 (4 h1)
10Yoshihiro OkumuraJPN1:49.54 (5 h7)1:49.49 (5 h1)
11George BovellTTO1:49.48 (4 h7)1:49.59 (6 h2)
12Andreas ZisimosGRE1:49.60 (7 h7)1:49.76 (6 h1)
13Brent HaydenCAN1:49.56 (6 h7)1:50.00 (7 h2)
14Dominik MeichtrySUI1:49.45 (6 h8)1:50.02 (7 h1)
15Olaf WildeboerESP1:50.01 (4 h6)1:50.61 (8 h1)
16Andrey KapralovRUS1:49.91 (3 h6)1:51.35 (8 h2)
17Jens SchreiberGER1:49.00 (3 h7)1
18Jacob CarstensenDEN1:50.15 (1 h5)
19Stefan HerbstGER1:50.23 (5 h6)
20Rodrigo CastroBRA1:50.27 (6 h6)
21Saulius BinevičiusLTU1:50.50 (2 h5)
22Peter MankočSLO1:50.72 (7 h8)
23Romāns MiloslavskisLAT1:50.83 (3 h5)
24Maksim KuznetsovRUS1:50.93 (8 h7)
25Nicolas RostoucherFRA1:50.96 (8 h8)
26Dominik KollAUT1:51.36 (4 h5)
27Dmytro VereitynovUKR1:51.38 (1 h4)
28Josh IlikaMEX1:51.66 (2 h4)
29Luís MonteiroPOR1:51.78 (5 h5)
30Łukasz DrzewińskiPOL1:51.90 (6 h5)
31Mihail AleksandrovBUL1:52.12 (1 h2)
32Tamás SzűcsHUN1:52.26 (7 h5)
33Han Gyu-CheolKOR1:52.28 (8 h5)
34Damian AlleyneBAR1:52.89 (3 h4)
=35Mahrez MebarekALG1:53.00 (4 h4)
=35Aleksandar MalenkoMKD1:53.00 (1 h3)
37Yahor SalabutauBLR1:53.03 (5 h4)
38Albert SubiratsVEN1:53.11 (2 h3)
39Giancarlo ZolezziCHI1:53.18 (6 h4)
=40Juan Martín PereyraARG1:53.19 (3 h3)
=40Shaune FraserCAY1:53.19 (4 h3)
42Miguel MolinaPHI1:53.81 (7 h4)
43Zhang LinCHN1:53.84 (7 h6)
44Alexandros ArestiCYP1:53.90 (5 h3)
45Martín KutscherURU1:53.91 (2 h2)
46Andrea BeccariITA1:54.00 (8 h6)
47Chen Te-TungTPE1:54.14 (6 h3)
48Igor ErhartićSCG1:54.21 (1 h1)
49Ștefan PinciucMDA1:54.56 (3 h2)
50Anouar Ben NaceurTUN1:54.69 (4 h2)
51Mark ChaySGP1:54.70 (5 h2)
52Aytekin MindanTUR1:55.65 (8 h4)
53Adil BellazMAR1:55.79 (6 h2)
54Mario DelačCRO1:55.82 (7 h3)
55Vitaly KhanKAZ1:56.11 (7 h2)
56Diego MularoniSMR1:56.18 (8 h3)
57Pyotr VasilyevUZB1:56.93 (8 h2)
58Zurab KhomasuridzeGEO1:58.02 (2 h1)
59Ruslan IsmailovKGZ2:01.53 (3 h1)

Round One (15 August 2004)

Fastest 16 advanced to the semi-finals.

Heat One (10:19)

15Igor ErhartićSCG1:54.210.76
23Zurab KhomasuridzeGEO1:58.020.78
34Ruslan IsmailovKGZ2:01.530.92

Heat Two (10:23)

16Mihail AleksandrovBUL1:52.120.76
23Martín KutscherURU1:53.910.81
35Ștefan PinciucMDA1:54.560.78
41Anouar Ben NaceurTUN1:54.690.79
52Mark ChaySGP1:54.700.74
64Adil BellazMAR1:55.790.83
77Vitaly KhanKAZ1:56.110.81
88Pyotr VasilyevUZB1:56.930.85

Heat Three (10:27)

12Aleksandar MalenkoMKD1:53.000.87
25Albert SubiratsVEN1:53.110.93
37Juan Martín PereyraARG1:53.190.91
48Shaune FraserCAY1:53.190.75
53Alexandros ArestiCYP1:53.900.83
64Chen Te-TungTPE1:54.140.92
76Mario DelačCRO1:55.820.82
81Diego MularoniSMR1:56.180.84

Heat Four (10:31)

12Dmytro VereitynovUKR1:51.380.86
23Josh IlikaMEX1:51.660.75
38Damian AlleyneBAR1:52.890.74
47Mahrez MebarekALG1:53.000.89
55Yahor SalabutauBLR1:53.030.76
66Giancarlo ZolezziCHI1:53.180.82
71Miguel MolinaPHI1:53.810.72
84Aytekin MindanTUR1:55.650.81

Heat Five (10:35)

13Jacob CarstensenDEN1:50.150.77
28Saulius BinevičiusLTU1:50.500.87
34Romāns MiloslavskisLAT1:50.830.91
45Dominik KollAUT1:51.360.84
51Luís MonteiroPOR1:51.780.88
62Łukasz DrzewińskiPOL1:51.900.85
77Tamás SzűcsHUN1:52.260.85
86Han Gyu-CheolKOR1:52.280.77

Heat Six (10:39)

14Michael PhelpsUSA1:48.430.73Q
25Rick SayCAN1:49.320.78Q
33Andrey KapralovRUS1:49.910.82Q
47Olaf WildeboerESP1:50.010.78q
56Stefan HerbstGER1:50.230.83
61Rodrigo CastroBRA1:50.270.70
78Zhang LinCHN1:53.840.82
82Andrea BeccariITA1:54.000.83

Heat Seven (10:43)

15Klete KellerUSA1:47.970.88Q
24Grant HackettAUS1:48.900.75Q
36Jens SchreiberGER1:49.000.86Q
47George BovellTTO1:49.480.83Q
52Yoshihiro OkumuraJPN1:49.540.74Q
63Brent HaydenCAN1:49.560.80Q
78Andreas ZisimosGRE1:49.600.87Q
81Maksim KuznetsovRUS1:50.930.86

Heat Eight (10:47)

14Ian ThorpeAUS1:47.220.90Q
25Pieter van den HoogenbandNED1:47.320.79Q
33Emiliano BrembillaITA1:47.950.85Q
46Simon BurnettGBR1:48.680.74Q
52Květoslav SvobodaCZE1:49.250.78Q
61Dominik MeichtrySUI1:49.450.68Q
77Peter MankočSLO1:50.720.81
88Nicolas RostoucherFRA1:50.960.89

Semi-Finals (15 August 2004)

Fastest eight advanced to the final.

Heat One (19:44)

14Pieter van den HoogenbandNED1:46.000.82Q
25Klete KellerUSA1:47.280.84Q
33Simon BurnettGBR1:47.720.75Q
46Květoslav SvobodaCZE1:49.270.76
57Yoshihiro OkumuraJPN1:49.490.73
61Andreas ZisimosGRE1:49.760.82
72Dominik MeichtrySUI1:50.020.71
88Olaf WildeboerESP1:50.610.77

Heat Two (19:50)

14Ian ThorpeAUS1:46.650.86Q
23Michael PhelpsUSA1:47.080.76Q
36Grant HackettAUS1:47.610.74Q
45Emiliano BrembillaITA1:47.930.84Q
52Rick SayCAN1:48.160.74Q
67George BovellTTO1:49.590.84
71Brent HaydenCAN1:50.000.79
88Andrey KapralovRUS1:51.350.80

Final (16 August 2004 — 19:45)

15Ian ThorpeAUS1:44.710.90OR
24Pieter van den HoogenbandNED1:45.230.79
33Michael PhelpsUSA1:45.320.76
46Klete KellerUSA1:46.130.80
52Grant HackettAUS1:46.560.75
68Rick SayCAN1:47.550.75
77Simon BurnettGBR1:48.020.75
81Emiliano BrembillaITA1:48.400.85