Olympic Swimmer Says Torn Shorts Cost Him World Record
Hungarian swimmer Kristof Milak ripped his swim trunks at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and, despite winning gold, the wardrobe malfunction cost him a world record.
On Wednesday (July 28), the 21-year-old athlete competed in the 200-meter butterfly final. Moments into the race, however, Milak's shorts ripped, which caused him to become distracted. He was hoping to beat his own record for the event, which he achieved in July 2019 with a time of 1:50:73. (At the time, the race broke Team USA Michael Phelp's 1:51:25, a record which he had held for 13 years.)
"They split 10 minutes before I entered the pool and in that moment I knew the world record was gone. I lost my focus and knew I couldn't do it," Milak told BBC of the wardrobe malfunction.
"It was a problem for me. I have a routine, a rhythm, a focus. This broke my focus and that problem impacted my time," Milak continued. "I wasn't swimming for the medal, I was swimming for the time. I said earlier I wanted a personal best. And my personal best is a world record."
Luckily, Milak had a spare and changed just before the final. Although he didn't break the world record, he did win Hungary the gold medal and achieved the third overall fastest time of his athletic career.
Still, social media users were confused by Milak's seemingly neutral reaction to winning first place.
"I’ve been watching the Olympics since 1984. I’ve never seen an athlete less thrilled to win a gold [medal] than Hungary’s Kristof Milak in the 200m fly. Guy did not crack a smile," one user tweeted.
See some of the best reactions, below.