Adam Peaty became the first British swimmer to retain an Olympic title with a characteristically dominant display in the final of the men’s 100 metres breaststroke at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre.
While he was unable to break his own world record of 56.88 seconds, the 26-year-old stormed to Team GB’s first gold of Tokyo 2020 in a time of 57.37secs – the fifth fastest time in history.
Closest challenger Arno Kamminga, the only swimmer other than Peaty to breach the 58-second barrier in this event, was a distant 0.63s behind in second.
Nicolo Martinenghi collected bronze in a time of 58.33s.
Who is Adam Peaty?
Adam Peaty is a British swimmer who was born on 28th December 1994.
He won the gold medal in the 100 metre breaststroke at the 2016 and 2020 Olympics, the first by a male British swimmer in 24 years. He is the current holder of the world record in 50 metre and 100 metre breaststroke events.
Peaty is an eight-time World Champion, a sixteen-time European Champion and a three-time Commonwealth Champion. He has broken world records 13 times and currently holds three world records in the 100 metre breaststroke (long course and short course) and the 50 metre breaststroke, becoming the first man to swim under 26 seconds for the 50 metre breaststroke and the first to swim the 100 metre breaststroke under both 58 and 57 seconds.
When did Adam Peaty start swimming?
Peaty as a child developed a fear of water and being put in a bath after his older brothers mischievously told him sharks could get in via the plughole.
At the age of four, Peaty and his friend both went on their first swimming lesson together. It was at this swimming lesson where he lost the fear.
Peaty first joined Dove Valley Swimming Club in Uttoxeter when he was nine, and started to win races and setting club records by the time he was 12. When he was 14, a friend took Peaty to join City of Derby Swimming Club, but the coach at the club, former Olympic swimmer Melanie Marshall, was initially not impressed by Peaty's performance in the freestyle and put him in the slow lane with younger girls.
However, Marshall spotted his natural ability in the style he has come to master, helping to hone a chiselled 6ft 3in frame that is able to power adroitly through the water and leave all his rivals struggling to keep up.
It was his mother Caroline who woke up at 4.30am every morning to take the youngest of her four children from their home in Uttoxeter to training.
Peaty has credited his father Mark for instilling a relentless work ethic that only surfaced in a sliding doors moment while watching London 2012, which put the then unfocused 17-year-old on the right path.
Who is Adam Peaty’s wife?
While Peaty was training at Loughborough University, he met girlfriend Eiri Munro, a student at the University.
He has credited the arrival of son George, born on 11th September 2020, with giving him a fresh perspective on life and while many questioned whether the burden of expectation would get to him, Peaty spoke with authority about how he embraces pressure.
When was the last time Adam Peaty lost a race?
Peaty is unbeaten in seven years in major events.
He rose to prominence at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow by pipping his idol Cameron van der Burgh to gold. Peaty and the South African would go toe-to-toe many times with the Briton often prevailing.
European and world honours swiftly followed – as he dominated both in the 100m and 50m, which to Peaty’s chagrin is not an event included in the Olympics – before making his presence felt as he won Team GB’s first gold in Brazil.
A time of 57.13s – a jaw-dropping 1.56s clear of the field – shattered the world record he had set days earlier as he became the first British male to become Olympic champion since Adrian Moorhouse in the same event at Seoul 1988.
Peaty has the 15 fastest breatstroke swims of all time over 100m.