Chad le Clos has set his sights on breaking the 100m butterfly world record during this year’s FINA World Cup series.
The 22-year-old South African swimming sensation broke his nation’s best time in the event yesterday (Thursday), swimming 48.70 to also set a world's best ‘textile best’ time. That’s a time without the benefit of a polyurethane suit, which helped decimate records in 2009 and 2010.
Korotyshkin's 'suited' record
That hasn’t stopped Le Clos setting his sights on the 48.48 posted by Evgeny Korotyshkin of Russia back in 2009, and he told us before the start of the short-course series that he is hoping to dip below that mark on one of the seven stops this year.
“I’m excited about this year’s event. In the 200m this year, we’ll see what happens. I think I’m just going to try and be consistent in that event and then try and break the 100m world record on one of the stops,” he exclusively told GiveMeSport.
"If I can do that, it would be great. We’ll just enter a lot of races, keep improving and hopefully get the world record along the way.”
Big trips ahead
The FINA swimming world cup started on Wednesday in Doha, and after yesterday’s finals travels to Dubai, Hong Kong, Moscow, Beijing, Tokyo and Singapore in the space of two months.
It’s a gruelling schedule that puts the top swimmers under pressure to perform, but Le Clos enjoys travelling around the world and believes all the effort helps him to ‘race tough’ on the big stage.
“Short course means you travel the world and it’s always at the same time of the year. It’s a gruelling series of seven or eight weeks, and you’ve got to be the most consistent swimmer in the world,” Le Clos added.
"However close you are to the world record, that’s how many points you get per leg. You also get points per gold medal, so you can either go for six gold medals per meet or you can go for two swims that are very close to a world record.
"Sometimes you’ve got to be tactical, because you can’t swim six legs for eight weeks. As I say, it’s gruelling, but it’s a lot of fun and teaches you how to race tough.”
Le Clos has already showed his tactical side in Doha, skipping the 200m freestyle and IM events before winning the 100m freestyle, 100m fly and 50m fly.
He's behind Thomas Fraser-Holmes in the individual rankings however, after the Australian won four-out-of-four in his events in Qatar.
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