Thorpe posts 54.35 in 100 butterfly prelim swim at the "Water Cube"
Thorpe split a 25.29 at the 50 and stopped the clock at 54.35, finishing 13th out of a field of 27 athletes in the men's 100m butterfly. On November 5th at the recent Singapore edition the Australian Olympic legend split 25.27 and posted a final time of 54.09; he finished 11th out of 26 athletes in the same event.
Following the prelim session of the Beijing edition of the FINA/ARENA Swimming World Cup, Ian Thorpe met with the media throng that had come to watch him swim and to get his reaction about his own comeback. Here's Ian Thorpe in his own words:
"I did this race [100m fly] in Singapore as well and it was about the same time. At this stage of the composition I'm pleased. Short course racing has always been tough for me. It's much more difficult for me than for some of the short course specialists. I'm working on my skills in the short course pool."
"In Tokyo I am likely to swim the 100m individual medley, the 100m fly and probably the 100m free and then it's back to training. I expect to be training about 30 hours a week. After these World Cup events I will now be able to attach the feeling of racing to the work that I am doing in training, marrying the two things together."
"I think most of it is getting my head back into racing. I'm working on rekindling the emotional attachment that I once had for the sport and working to get those feelings back."
"My adjustment has been easier because I accepted the fact that I would not be winning all of these races. I have prepared myself for this. It would be preferable if I had this level of media attention for the races that I will be winning. I'm grateful that their is interest in my comeback."
"It's not that hard to get your body back in shape. I'm physically fit for training and I'd like to believe that I am physically fit for racing as well. Now I just need to get my head into it. I'm much more relaxed before I swim now and technically I am able to break my races down and I know that I am improving. I'm comfortable getting reading for my events and I'm just getting used to racing again."