18-Year-Old Ilya Kharun Breaks Canadian Record, 3rd Into Final of Men’s 200 Fly


It has been a tough meet for the Canadians this week in Fukuoka so far, but their best teenage male talent Ilya Kharun has bucked the bug and cruised 3rd into Wednesday’s finals of the men’s 200 fly in a new Canadian Record of 1:54.28.

The performance also ties him as the #25 man globally in the history of the event.

The 18-year-old was once believed to be American, and trains with the Sandpipers of Nevada, but he is now representing Canada internationally, he has already taken big bites out of the Canadian Records in swimming. His previous best was a 1:54.49 from the Pro Swim Series meet in Fort Lauderdale in March.

The next-best Canadian in this event in history is Mack Darragh, who swam 1:56.27 in 2018.

Splits Comparison:

Ilya Kharun Ilya Kharun Mack Darragh
New Canadian Record Old Canadian Record Canadian #2
50m 25.51 26.04 25.88
100m 29.47 (54.98) 29.25 (55.29) 29.32 (55.20)
150m 29.42 29.54 30.11
200m 29.88 (59.30) 29.66 (59.20) 30.96 (1:01.07)
Total Time 1:54.28 1:54.49 1:56.27

Kharun is starting to build some front-half speed on this 200 fly, and that’s where his latest progress comes from. He’s still not in the same realm as a swimmer like Carson Foster in this race, who splits 53-mids on the front half when tapering, but he is marching closer to the Marchands and Hondas of the world, who take their race out in 54-low.

Kharun is also the first Canadian man to final at the World Championships in the 200 fly since the 1986 event where two Canadian men, Thomas Ponting and Valistimil Cerny, both made the final.

Holding on to a medal will be tough, with one of the favorites Tomoru Honda lurking, but he looks more-and-more like one of Canada’s best medal hopes on the men’s side headed toward next year’s Paris Olympic Games.

Kharun said that after prelims, his future NCAA Coach Bob Bowman wasn’t happy with him. In the heats, Kharun swam 1:55.93 to qualify 13th into the semi-finals.

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4 months ago

Very excited for Ilya!! Such a bright future ahead.

Christopher DeBari
4 months ago

Kharun is going to medal in Paris. Mark my words. Heilman may as well.

Alex Wilson
4 months ago

Ilya will also be benefitting from some great training this coming year leading up to the NCAAs and the Olympics under coach Bob Bowman at ASU. We all know that coach Bowman has some kind of “magic” when it comes to developing elite swimmers. I expect he will be a force at both the NCAAs and at the Olympics!

Alex Wilson
Reply to  Alex Wilson
4 months ago

The commentary and analysis on the fly semis was given by Michael Phelps and is very much worth reviewing for any aspiring flyer!

Reply to  Alex Wilson
4 months ago

Imagine being MP listening to Rowdy yelling whilst you’re trying to do such great analysis.

Reply to  Alex Wilson
4 months ago

Maybe, but the hairstyle is hard to look at

Christopher DeBari
Reply to  RAP
4 months ago

Real talk. The man bun is horrendous.

Natation Fly
Reply to  Alex Wilson
4 months ago

Are there any clips online!? Canadians can’t get peacock

Reply to  Natation Fly
4 months ago

Cbc sports streams live at 9pm eastern for prelims and 7am eastern for semis and finals

Christopher DeBari
Reply to  Alex Wilson
4 months ago

Liked how he threw in not to breath off your first stroke after turn to avoid losing momentum. I actually did that today and it felt more fluid (though I’m old).

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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