Castlebar swimmer, Nicholas Quinn's Olympic hopes came to an end on Tuesday evening in the pool in Rio in agonising fashion. The University of Edinburgh student missed out on a place in the semifinal of the 200m breaststroke by 0.41 of a second. Quinn finished in a time of 2:11.67, his fastest morning swim ever and second fastest 200m breaststroke swim to date. He needed a time of 2:11.24, equal to his personal best in the heat which would have seen him through to the semifinal. Quinn had gone into the Olympics ranked 27th in the world and finished in 19th place in the games.
Quinn tweeted after the event saying: "Not the result I aimed for yesterday, but happy knowing I gave it everything. Seriously proud to have represented #Irl on the biggest stage. Thanks everyone for all the support and messages. Now time to relax and enjoy being out here supporting the rest of #TeamIreland." Quinn had earlier in the week swum in the 100m breaststroke (his second strongest event ), finishing fourth in his heat with a time of 1:00.29 and finishing in 33rd place overall.
There was much disappointment locally that national broadcaster RTÉ did not screen either of Quinn's swims live on air on Saturday or Tuesday, leaving viewers having to watch the event live online on RTÉ's Olympics Player feed or sourcing the event live from other international broadcasters. They did screen the races shortly after they had finished. Former swimmer Andrew Bree, in the analyst’s chair in the RTÉ studio this evening, said that he expected Nicholas to beat his still standing national record in the 200 metre breaststroke in the near future.