Brent Hayden knows he only has a few swims left in his Olympic career. He’s determined to make all of them count.
In the Monday morning heats of the 100-metre freestyle, the 28-year-old B.C. native swam the fifth-fastest time overall, 48.53 seconds, to qualify for the evening semi-final.
Matched in the same heat with Australia’s James Magnussen, the world record holder in the 100, Hayden had a good finish to try and make up for his miscalculation four years ago in Beijing. There, he tried to save some energy in the semi-finals only to miss out on a spot in the final.
He has vowed not to do that again.
“I’m holding nothing back,” he said after his heat. “I made that mistake in Beijing. I had a relay that night and it played in my head and I had a little too much confidence being world champ the year before. I thought I had room to save energy and I didn’t really focus is getting into the final, making sure it happened.”
Hayden added he was pushing himself since, “Tonight could be the last time I race the individual 100-metre freestyle. I’ve got to race like it’s my last race.”
Nathan Adrian of the U.S. had the fastest time in the heats at 48.19. Hayden will also compete here in a relay and the 50-metre freestyle.
Scott Dickens, of Burlington, Ont., raced in the 200-m breaststroke Monday and won his heat in a personal best of 2:10.95. That got him into the semi-final.
Audrey Lacroix, of Pont-Rouge, Que., qualified for the semi-finals of the women’s 200-m butterfly. Katerine Savard, of Cap-Rouge, Que., did not.