Mitchell got the first crack at it, swimming solo in the main pool in a time trial approved by world governing body FINA after many fans had already left the arena.
But a few hung around — and they were all cheering loudly for Mitchell.
“I was super nervous in the staging area. Shaking almost,” he said. “As soon as I walked out, I looked around. I made a point to look at everyone in the stands, to hear everyone cheering for me. That was an amazing feeling.”