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Swimming at the 1968 Ciudad de México Summer Games:

Men's 100 metres Butterfly

Swimming at the 1968 Summer Games: Next Summer Games

Events:

Host City: Ciudad de México, Mexico
Venue(s): Francisco Márquez Olympic Swimming Pool, Ciudad de México
Date Started: October 20, 1968
Date Finished: October 21, 1968

Gold: USA Doug Russell
Silver: USA Mark Spitz
Bronze: USA Ross Wales

Summary

This was a new Olympic event but the favorite was well known – [Mark Spitz], who was the world record holder. Spitz came to Mexico City attempting to win gold medals in six events. He disappointed, winning two gold medals in relays, and one silver and one bronze in individual events. Better things would be ahead for him in Munich four years hence. His biggest challenger in this event was his teammate [Doug Russell], but Russell had never defeated Spitz at the distance. Normally a fast starter, he was invariably passed by Spitz on the home lap. In Mexico City, however, Russell went out slowly as Spitz led the final to the turn in 26.1. On the final lap, Russell pulled ahead and won the gold medal with Spitz second, winning his individual silver, and [Ross Wales] completing the American sweep. Spitz would return in 1972 and win this event in world record time, along with most everything else.

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