We’re getting to the middle of the 2014 European Swimming Championships, with day 4 (of 7) finals ready to blast off from Berlin.
Day four features some big races. Great Britain’s Jazz Carlin will head the women’s 800 free, trying to hold off some big names like Mireia Belmonte Garcia and Lotte Friis while also trying to keep pace with American phenom Katie Ledecky, who came within tenths of the world record at Pan Pacs earlier today.
Katinka Hosszu and Belmonte Garcia will do battle in the women’s 200 IM, where they’re the top two seeds. That’s the second swim in Belmonte Garcia’s double and the first in Hosszu’s, as the Iron Lady will also swim the 100 back final. In other finals, Great Britain looks to sweep gold and silver medals in both breaststroke events, holding the top two seeds in the 200-meter distance with Ross Murdoch and Andrew Willis. They’ll have to hold off 3-seed Marco Koch of Germany to do it, though.
Denmark has a pair of top seeds, with Mie Nielsen leading the women’s 100 back and Viktor Bromer atop the men’s 200 fly. Tonight’s finals will also feature the women’s 4×200 free relay.
2014 LEN EUROPEAN SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Wednesday, August 13-Sunday, August 24, 2014 (pool swimming Monday, 8/18-Sunday 8/24)
- The Velodrom, Berlin, Germany
- Local time: Prelims 9:30am, Finals 6pm (Monday-Thursday), 4pm (Friday-Sunday)
- Meet website
- Event schedule
- Live stream
- Live results
Women’s 800 free – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Boglarka Kapas, Hungary, 8:26.49
- 2010 European Champ: Lotte Friis, Denmark, 8:23.27
Meet Record: Laure Manaudou, France, 8:19.29 – 2006
- World Record: Katie Ledecky, USA, 8:11.00 – 2014
- European Record: Rebecca Adlington, Great Britain, 8:14.10 – 2008
Commonwealth Games gold medalist Jazz Carlin added a second big 800 free gold medal, winning the European title in 8:15.54. That’s easily a new meet record and came close to the European record as well, currently held at 8:14.10 by Carlin’s Great Britain teammate.
Carlin actually trailed early, locked in a tight battle with Spain’s Mireia Belmonte Garcia for much of the race. The Spaniard went out fast, leading until the 600 meter mark, but once Carlin took over, she built a lead in a hurry. While Carlin descended her splits from 31s to 30s, Belmonte Garcia faded to 32s by the end. Belmonte Garcia still pulled off second place overall, going 8:21.22.
Hungary’s Boglarka Kapas nearly ran down Belmonte Garcia for silver, finishing in 8:22.06. Denmark’s Lotte Friis was just outside the medals, going 8:27.21.
Women’s 200 IM – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary, 2:10.84
- 2010 European Champ: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary, 2:10.09
Meet Record: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary, 2:10.09 – 2010
- World Record: Ariana Kukors, USA, 2:06.15 – 2009
- European Record: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary, 2:07.46 – 2009
The winner of the past two European titles in the 200 IM, Katinka Hosszu made it three in a row, going 2:08.11 to easily win the final. That came after Hosszu hit her semifinal swim really hard, and Hosszu actually took three more tenths off of that time here. Hosszu did most of her damage early, with the fastest fly and back splits in the field, and she also closed in 30.3 for freestyle, the fastest free split of any finalist.
That time for Hosszu breaks her own meet record, set back in the semifinals. Second place went to Great Britain’s Aimee Willmott in 2:11.44. Willmott won a tight battle with Austria’s Lisa Zaiser, who wound up taking home bronze. Zaiser led on butterfly but Willmott took over on back and breast. Zaiser closed harder on the final 50, but the Brit had enough lead to hold her off, relegating Zaiser to bronze in 2:12.17.
Just outside the medals was Hungary’s Evelyn Verraszto at 2:12.95. Also in that heat was Spain’s Mireia Belmonte Garcia, who literally jumped out of lane 5 from her runner-up 800 free and jumped right back into it for the IM. She showed quite a bit of fatigue, sliding to 8th in 2:18.46, but she did go out fast, running 3rd at the 50-mark.
Men’s 100 Free – Semifinals
- 2012 European Champ: Filippo Magnini, Italy, 48.77
- 2010 European Champ: Alain Bernard, France, 48.49
- Meet Record: Alain Bernard, France, 47.50 – 2008
- World Record: Cesar Cielo, Brazil, 46.91 – 2009
- European Record: Alain Bernard, France, 47.12 – 2009
The men’s 100 free is setting up to be an extremely close affair after the semis. In semifinal #1, France’s Florent Manaudou just eked out a win over Italy’s Luca Dotto, 48.61 to 48.68. Then in the second semi, their teammates Fabien Gilot (France) and Luca Leonardi (Italy) tied for the win at 48.67, putting all four swimmers into the final while sitting within .07 of one another.
The entire top 8 got under 49 seconds; in fact, 9th place was also in the 48s this morning. Also into the final:
- Florent Manaudou (FRA) – 48.61
- Luca Leonardi (ITA) – 48.67
- Fabian Gilot (FRA) – 48.67
- Luca Dotto (ITA) – 48.68
- Dominik Kozma (HUN) – 48.83
- Sergey Fesikov (RUS) – 48.91
- Alexander Sukhorukov (RUS) – 48.94
- Marius Radu (ROU) – 48.95
Women’s 100 Fly – Semifinals
- 2012 European Champ: Ingvild Snildal, Norway, 58.04
- 2010 European Champ: Sarah Sjoestroem, Sweden, 57.32
- Meet Record: Martina Moravcova, Slovakia, 57.20 – 2002
- World Record: Dana Vollmer, USA, 55.98 – 2012
- European Record: Sarah Sjoestroem, Sweden, 56.06 – 2009
Sarah Sjostrom has been dominating her events thus far, and after winning the 50 fly earlier in the week, she’s got to be the heavy favorite to win the 100 as well. Sjostrom is the top seed after going 57.39 to win the first semifinal. The Swede will have some stiff competition, though, as Denmark’s Jeannette Ottesen is the second seed at 57.45. Also in the 57s was Inge Dekker of the Netherlands in 57.83.
They’re all within six-tenths of the meet record, but they’ll have quite a ways to go to fight for the European or World records, something we speculated Sjostrom at least could go after before the meet.
- Sarah Sjostrom (SWE) – 57.39
- Jeannette Ottesen (DEN) – 57.45
- Inge Dekker (NED) – 57.83
- Elena De Liddo (ITA) – 58.04
- Ilaria Bianchi (ITA) – 58.28
- Jemma Lowe (GBR) – 58.34
- Katarina Listopadova (SVK) – 58.53
- Alexandra Wenk (GER) – 58.59
Men’s 200 Breast – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Daniel Gyurta, Hungary, 2:08.60
- 2010 European Champ: Daniel Gyurta, Hungary, 2:08.95
- Meet Record: Daniel Gyurta, Hungary, 2:08.60 – 2012
- World Record: Akihiro Yamaguchi, Japan, 2:07.01 – 2012
- European Record: Daniel Gyurta, Hungary, 2:07.23 – 2013
With longtime 200 breast star Daniel Gyurta taking a summer off of the event, the men’s 200 breast had been a seesaw affair through the early rounds. Great Britain’s Ross Murdoch and Andrew Willis were the top two seeds out of semifinals, though Germany’s Marco Koch was right in the hunt. In the final, it was Koch who leapfrogged the Brits for the win, going 2:07.47 to take home gold.
That just misses the European and World records that have been on the block for awhile, and it keeps swimming fans waiting for the first 2:06 in the event, something that seemed a real possibility. Meanwhile Murdoch hung on for second, going 2:07.77 for the Brits. That’s their third men’s breaststroke medal of the week after going 1-2 in the 100. Lithuania’s Giedrius Titenis went 2:08.93, sneaking in to break up the British duo. Willis wound up 4th at 2:09.19, falling off his semifinal swim by a couple tenths.
Women’s 100 Back – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Jenny Mensing, Germany, 1:00.08
- 2010 European Champ: Gemma Spofforth, Great Britain, 59.80
- Meet Record: Anastasia Zuyeva, Russia, 59.41 – 2008
- World Record: Gemma Spofforth, Great Britain, 58.12 – 2009
- European Record: Gemma Spofforth, Great Britain, 58.12 – 2009
In what’s been a week full of ties in big international meets around the world, the women’s 100 back ended in another one. Katinka Hosszu of Hungary and Mie Nielsen out of Denmark each went 59.63 to grab a share of gold. Nielsen, the top seed, went out fast, leading the way at 28.47 to her feet at the 50. But Hosszu roared back, erasing a .9-second lead over the final 50 meters to earn her second gold of the night. Both women just missed the meet record by two tenths, but were the fastest European champs of the past three Championships.
Great Britain’s Georgia Davies also got under a minute and claimed bronze. The Commonwealth Games silver medalist was 59.74, coming in just behind Hosszu and Nielsen.
The field’s youngest swimmer, 19-year-old Daryna Zevina, was 4th for the Ukraine, going 1:00.33.
Men’s 200 Fly – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Laszlo Cseh, Hungary, 1:54.95
- 2010 European Champ: Pawel Korzeniowski, Poland, 1:55.00
- Meet Record: Pawel Korzeniowski, Poland, 1:54.38 – 2008
- World Record: Michael Phelps, USA, 1:51.51 – 2009
- European Record: Laszlo Cseh, Hungary, 1:52.70
Denmark’s Viktor Bromer held his top seed to win the 200 fly. The 21-year-old was 1:55.29, taking a few tenths off his semifinal time to lead the field. Hungary’s Bence Biczo pushed hard for the gold medal, swimming within a tenth of Bromer at the 100 and 150 walls, but couldn’t make his move past Bromer at the end. He wound up taking silver with a 1:55.62.
Former European Champ Pawel Korzeniowski took home bronze for Poland, going 1:55.74. Belgian 20-year-old Louis Croenen was 1:56.06 to take fourth overall.
Women’s 200 Breast – Semifinals
- 2012 European Champ: Sarah Nordenstam, Norway, 2:26.91
- 2010 European Champ: Anastasia Chaun, Russia, 2:23.50
- Meet Record: Anastasia Chaun, Russia, 2:23.50 – 2010
- World Record: Rikke Pedersen, Denmark, 2:19.11 – 2013
- European Record: Rikke Pedersen, Denmark, 2:19.11 – 2013
Denmark’s Rikke Moller Pederson is the World Record-holder in this event, so it’s no surprise to see her on top after the semifinals. Her time was probably a little slower than expected, though, based on how her season’s gone. Pederson has already been sub-2:20 this season, rattling her own world record, but was just 2:22.32 in the semis. Still, Pederson probably has plenty more in the tank, as she’s done just enough so far in Berlin to earn another swim. She was just 2:27 in the heats, and cut 5 seconds to semifinals with no problem. We’ll find out tomorrow night if she can cut three more and threaten her world record in the event.
Russia’s Vitalina Simonova is the second seed at 2:23.35, and then things dropped off to a pair of Spanish 2:24s before really spreading out after that. Spain’s Jessica Vall Montenegro and Marina Garcia were 2:24.78 and 2:24.87, respectively.
Also into the A final:
- Rikke Moller Pedersen (DEN) – 2:22.32
- Vitalina Simonova (RUS) – 2:23.35
- Jessica Vall Montenegro (ESP) – 2:24.78
- Marina Garcia (ESP) – 2:24.87
- Molly Renshaw (GBR) – 2:25.55
- Maria Astashkina (RUS) – 2:26.14
- Fanny Lecluyse (BEL) – 2:26.26
- Guiliana de Ascentis (ITA) – 2:26.34
Men’s 50 Back – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Jonatan Kopelev, Israel, 24.73
- 2010 European Champ: Camille Lacourt, France, 24.07
- Meet Record: Camille Lacourt, France, 24.07 – 2010
- World Record: Liam Tancock, Great Britain, 24.03 – 2009
- European Record: Liam Tancock, Great Britain, 24.03 – 2009
Russian sprinter Vlad Morozov picked up the last individual gold of the day, winning the men’s 50 back in 24.64. That was enough to beat out the tough Frenchman Jeremy Stravius (24.84) by two tenths, as the two were the only men under 25 seconds in the final.
Morozov will look to add to his medal total over the rest of the week, and this has to get Russian swimming fans excited for his signature 50 free. Stravius, on the other hand, picks up his second silver medal after taking second in the 100 back as well.
The gold medalist in that 100 back was Chris Walker-Hebborn of Great Britain, and he wound up third in the straight-line 50. Walker-Hebborn was 25.00, just missing the 24-second territory while taking bronze.
Just outside of medal contention were Germany’s Nicolas Graesser (25.02) and Israel’s Guy Barnea (25.05).
Women 4×200 Free Relay – Finals
- 2012 European Champ: Italy, 7:52.90
- 2010 European Champ: Hungary, 7:52.49
- Meet Record: Germany, 7:50.82 – 2006
- World Record: China, 7:42.08 – 2009
- European Record: GBR, 7:45.51 – 2009
Italy won gold in the women’s 800 free relay, running down Sweden on the final leg and just getting under the meet record with a 7:50.53.
That came on the back of 200 free world record-holder Federica Pellegrini, who split 1:56.50 and ran down the Swedes. The Swedish squad only had that big lead, though, because of an amazing split put up by sprint sensation Sarah Sjostrom – 1:53.64 swimming third. That was the field’s fastest split by almost two full seconds.
Italy was the most consistent relay, though, as Sweden really fell off on the final leg. After Sjostrom left the water, Stina Gardell fell to 2:01.51 in trying to hold off Pellegrini.
The Italian squad was made up of Alice Mizzau (1:58.34), Steffania Pirozzi (1:57.63), Luccetti Masini (1:58.06) and Pellegrini. Their 7:50.53 was just three tenths under the old meet record set by Germany 8 years ago. Sweden went 7:51.03 for silver, and Hungary finished third in 7:54.23, getting a 1:56.58 from tonight’s double-gold-medalist Katinka Hosszu.