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Lewis Clareburt embracing Tik Tok fame before Olympics

Kiwi swimmer Lewis Clareburt carries 25 years of Olympic underachievement on his shoulders in Tokyo, but it's his sudden online fame that's front of mind for now.

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The Kiwi swimmer has become a hit on the social media platform, helping him take his mind off the pool. Source: 1 NEWS

Clareburt has become a hit on social media platform Tik Tok while away from the pool.

“I hit a million views just before which is so gnarly,” he said.

Clareburt has dragged teammate Zac Reid along for the ride, much to his disdain.

“I haven't heard the end of it,” Reid said.

“Every waking minute he's telling people about his TikTok, I'm hoping he's going to focus more on his race.”

Reid said it’s all part of their “bromance” though.

“Lew's one of my best mates so it's really cool, being able to experience everything with him.”

Jokes aside, the social media fun is helping them - particularly 22-year-old Clareburt - take their minds off ending male swimming pain for New Zealand.

Danyon Loader was the last Kiwi man to win an Olympic medal with his historic golden double in Atlanta in 1996.

For Clareburt's coach Gary Hollywood, it's no surprise it's taken so long to have a genuine chance of re-writing history.

Lewis Clareburt. Source: Photosport

“We can't cater for great swimmers, so that's why our best female athletes will go to netball and rowing,” Hollywood said.

“When I see those girls on the NZ rowing team in the village they could easily be swimmers.

“But rowing is geared up for high performance athletes - they've got the coaches, they've got the facilities and we don't have that.”

Despite that, he says those who are with him are ready for what lies ahead.

“I spoke to Lewis last night and for the first time ever in his career, he's given me a 10 out of 10.”

Clareburt told 1 NEWS the rating felt right.

“I guess I base it off one main factor which is trying to swim fast, being able to relax in the water and actually feel good and I definitely felt that yesterday.”