Emma McKeon chasing an unprecedented nine medals

She is already Australia’s greatest ever Olympian but Emma McKeon is poised to break one of swimming’s untouchable milestones.
The serial record breaker is chasing an unprecedented nine medals at one event.
Already the most prolific female medallist at a single Olympics after winning seven medals at last year’s Tokyo Olympics, the unstoppable McKeon is chasing what would be a record for any swimmer at any major international meet – including the Olympics, world championships, Commonwealth Games, Pan Pacific championships or continental meets like the European championships and Asian Championships.
The current record is eight – which the mighty American Phelps set at the 2008 Beijing Olympics – but McKeon is aiming to eclipse his mark.
And on past performances, there’s little stopping her achieving what she sets out to do because she’s used to scooping the pool.
As well as the seven medals she won in Japan 12 months ago, McKeon also won six medals at each of the last world championship and each of the past two Commonwealth Games.
Barring a major mishap, she will obliterate all the records as Australia’s greatest swimmer but to be the best of the best she has to go into uncharted waters.
So this time she has entered four individual events: 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 50m butterfly and 100m butterfly, plus she’s a shoo-in to be picked in five relays: 4x100m freestyle, 4x200m freestyle, 4x100m medley, 4x100m mixed freestyle, 4x100m mixed medley.
Unless the Aussies get disqualified, they almost always win a medal – usually gold – in every swimming relay, and with swimmers able to compete in up to five relays with the addition of two mixed races, massive totals suddenly seem reachable.
But it still takes a lot of stamina, speed and nerves and McKeon has the lot, which she credits to her master coach Michael Bohl, who she said prepares her physically and mentally for the extra challenges of swimming nine finals in six days.
“I don‘t like to put limits on things,” McKeon told News Corp.
“Bohly definitely works us very hard so I think that‘s a huge reason that I can back up race after race each year.
“The other side is the motivation inside me, he keeps the environment fresh all the time. He‘s an awesome coach to work with.
“He keeps everyone relaxed and he keeps everything in perspective as well and I think that‘s been the key with where I’ve gotten to every day in training.”
McKeon isn’t the only Aussie chasing a stockpile of medals in the English Midlands.
Teenage sensation Mollie O’Callaghan could be taking home up to eight medals at her Commonwealth Games debut. Just 18, she’s a star on the rise and has already been chalking up impressive medal tallies.
Watch her closely because she could be the next Emma McKeon and is already off to a great start.
At last year’s Tokyo Olympics, O’Callaghan was still in high school and only swam in the relay heats but still made a massive impression, winning two golds and a bronze. Fast forward to 2022 she was the single best performer of anyone at last month’s world championships, scooping up six medals – three gold and three silver – and winning the individual 100m title, joining some of the greatest names in the sport .
McKeon’s return means O’Callaghan might have her work cut out winning the 100m in Birmingham but she’ll give the Queen of the pool a mighty scare when they oppose each other – and a mighty sense of relief when they join forces.

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