It is the final day of competition at the European Swimming Championships with the Women’s 400 free and Men’s 400 IM the only remaining individuals left in prelim action. Spain’s Mireia Belmonte Garcia and Melanie Costa Schmid will battle for the crown in the 400 free while youngster Jazmin Carlin may have a thing or two to say about that along the way, and we also can’t forget former world record holder Federica Pellegrini as well.
It’s anyone’s race in the men’s 400 IM, but look for Britain’s Robert Pavoni and Hungary’s David Verraszto to lead the way. We will also see the prelims of the 4×100 medley relay for both men and women.
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 400 freestyle
- 2012 European Champ: Coralie Balmy (FRA) – 4:05.31
- 2010 European Champ: Rebecca Adlington (GBR) – 4:04.55
- Meet Record: Federica Pelligrini (ITA) – 4:01.53 (2008)
- World Record: Katie Ledecky (USA) – 3:58.37 (2014)
- European Record: Federica Pelligrini (ITA) – 3:59.15 (2009)
Federica Pellegrini was able to just edge out Mireia Belmonte Garcia 4:07.09-4:07.12 to take the second heat, and those will be your top two qualifiers entering tonight’s final. Pellegrini was out first in the field at the 200 at 2:03.75, and she was just able to hold on against a charging Belmonte Garcia. Belmonte Garcia actually negative split her race 2:04.27/2:02.85, so she was fairly composed during the race. She will have a tough double tonight with the 200 fly right before the 400 free.
Sharon Rouwendaal of the Netherlands took the final heat in a 4:07.59 to qualify third, while the rest of the top 8 is comprised of Jazmin Carlin (4:08.17), Boglarka Kapas (4:09.17), Melanie Costa Schmid (4:09.59), Lotte Friis (4:09.75), Diletta Carli (4:09.84), and Sarah Koehler (4:10.13).
We will have to see how Lotte Friis performs tonight in order to see if she has recovered at all from her illness earlier this week. What is important is that she got a second swim and was able to keep even with the very tightly packed middle of the heat.
Katinka Hosszu scratched this event this morning, very likely to focus on the 200 fly final tonight.
Men’s 400 IM
- 2012 European Champ: Laszlo Cseh (HUN) – 4:12.17
- 2010 European Champ: Laszlo Cseh (HUN) – 4:10.95
- Meet Record: Laszlo Cseh (HUN) – 4:09.59 (2008)
- World Record: Michael Phelps (USA) – 4:03.84 (2008)
- European Record: Laszlo Cseh (HUN) – 4:06.16 (2008)
David Verraszto set the pace this morning with his 4:16.78 effort. His middle 200 was very strong overall, including a 1:05.2 backstroke and a 1:11.2 breaststroke. Judging by how easy his freestyle looked, he did enough to take the heat this morning and will have a little extra to put on display tonight.
Flanking Verraszto tonight will be Roberto Pavoni (4:17.32) and Yannick Lebherz (4:17.94). The rest of the top 8 are Federico Turrini (4:17.94), Jacob Heidtmann (4:18.75), Alexis Manacas Santos (4:19.11), Max Litchfield (4:19.23), and Richard Nagy (4:19.27)
No real surprises here, and it’s looking like it will shape up to be a great race tonight between Verraszto, Pavoni, and Lebherz, and possibly Turrini as well. Pavoni comes in with the fastest seed at 4:12.24, so he will surely have conserved some energy this morning and just done enough to take his heat.
Women’s 4 x 100 medley relay
- 2012 European Champ: Germany – 3:58.43 (Mensing/Powewe/Wenk/Steffen)
- 2010 European Champ: Great Britain – 3:59.72 (Spofforth/Haywood/Halsall/Smith)
- Meet Record: Germany – 3:58.43 (Mensing/Powewe/Wenk/Steffen) (2012)
- World Record: USA – 3:52.05 (Franklin/Soni/Vollmer/Schmitt) (2012)
- European Record: Germany – 3:55.79 (Samulski/Poewe/Mehlhorn/Steffen) (2009)
Denmark’s foursome of Mie Nielsen (1:00.43), Rikke Moeller Pedersen (1:06.37), Jeannette Ottesen (59.10), and Pernille Blume (53.92) led the way in prelims with a 3:59.82. Nielsen posted the fastest backstroke split of all prelims leadoff legs, and the Danes never relinquished their lead after. This is the exact same foursome that established a new national record back at the 2012 Olympics (3:57.76), and given that Ottesen swims near her individual time in the fly, we could see a new meet and national record from Denmark tonight.
They will have to keep an eye out for the Netherlands and Sweden though, who sit at 2nd and 3rd with a 4:01.28 and 4:01.83 respectively. Sweden did not use Sarah Sjoestroem this morning, so we should see multiple teams under 4:00 tonight.
Finishing 4th-8th were Great Britain (4:03.03), Italy (4:03.65), Ukraine (4:04.11), Spain (4:04.23), and Russia (4:04.54)
Men’s 4 x 100 medley relay
- 2012 European Champ: Italy – 3:32.80 (Di Tora/Scozzoli/Rivolta/Magnini)
- 2010 European Champ: France – 3:31.32 (Lacourt/Duboscq/Bousquet/Gilot)
- Meet Record: France – 3:31.32 (Lacourt/Duboscq/Bousquet/Gilot) (2010)
- World Record: USA – 3:27.28 (Peirsol/Shanteau/Phelps/Walters) (2009)
- European Record: Germany – 3:28.58 (Meeuw/Feldwehr/Starke/Biedermann) (2009)
The French quartet of Benjamin Stasiulis (55.00), Giacomo Perez-Dortona (59.35), Mehdy Metella (51.45), and Gregory Mallet (48.83) were able to hold off Hungary and establish the lead time of prelims at 3:34.65. France was helped by an excellent middle 200 by Perez-Dortona and Metella, whose combined times of 1:50.80 was easily the fastest of all teams involved. France did not use Agnel this morning so they have the option of substituting him in tonight as well as using Jeremy Stravius as the backstroker or freestyler.
Hungary (3:34.89) finished just behind France thanks to a great lead off leg by Laszlo Cseh (54.28, fastest of all backstrokers), and a great anchor by Dominik Kozma (48.35, fastest of all 2nd-heat teams). Comprising the rest of the top 8 are Germany (3:36.43), Great Britain (3:36.82), Russia (3:37.44, no Morozov), Poland (3:37.87, no Czerniak), Lithuania (3:38.53), and the Netherlands (3:39.20).
It may be tough to beat the French tonight considering all the options they have, but Hungary has been very good as team all week long. Furthermore, if Russia can finally get a good leg out of Morozov, they are always contenders.