2016 Japanese Olympic Trials Day 1 Prelims Recap


Note: As of midnight EDT, the Seiko site’s results for day 1 prelims were not available. Below is a recap based off of how the top performers in each event fared this morning.

Men’s 400 IM – Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 4:07.61, Kosuke Hagino (2013)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 4:12.24

Although we’re awaiting official results on the Seiko site on all events still at this point, we can report that National Record holder in the event, Kosuke Hagino ripped a swift 4:09.80 in prelims this morning to take the top seed. The time is just 4:09.06 he posted in February at the Konami Open, which remains as the top time in the world so far this season. This morning, Hagino was certainly breathing as if he had just raced, but wasn’t remotely winded, which may prove telling for what he has left in the tank for tonight.

With the 2nd fastest time of the morning, but a ways off his in-country rival, Daiya Seto got on the board with a time of 4:15.96. Seto was right with Hagino through the fly leg, but that’s when Seto fell off the 2012 Olympic bronze medalist’s pace and settled for a runner-up swim in the heat. Both men will be in the middle of the pool again come the finals.

2015-2016 LCM Men 400 IM

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Women’s 100 Butterfly – Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 57.56, Rikako Ikee (2015)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 57.77

15-year-old Rikako Ikee indeed came away with the top time of the morning, crushing the competition with a time of 58.14. We know of what this teenager is capable, seeing how she racked up a new World Junior Record earlier this year in a time of 57.56, a mark which sits as 6th-fastest in the world. Look for Ikee to shave even more time of in her evening final, possibly dipping into 57-second-territory yet again.

Men’s 400 Freestyle – Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 3:43.90, Kosuke Hagino (2014)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 3:46.53

This has been a successful another event for Hagino in the past and he actually owns the world’s 6th-fastest time in the event this season with the 3:47.61 at the Konami Open in February. But, Hagino and his coach, Norimasa Hirai, opted out of including this in his Olympic repertoire, focusing on just the 400m IM on day 1 of trials and, eventually, in Rio. As such, the 400m free field is wide open for anyone to claim the 3:46.53 Japanese Olympic-qualifying time tonight in finals.

Leading the charge is Naito Ehara, who earned the top spot headed into finals with his time of 3:50.15. He’ll need to drop about 4+ seconds to get into the Olympic-qualifying zone.

Waiting on Seiko Results

Women’s 400 IM – Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 4:35.04, Sakiko Shimizu (2016)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 4:36.88

No major fireworks were seen in the morning swims, although 2 women did break the 4:40 barrier en route to taking the top 2 seeds. Sakiko Shimzu cleared a time of 4:37.42 to notch a mark just outside the world’s top 10, although the 24-year-old has been as fast as 4:35.04 in 2016.

Miho Takahashi made her move out of heat 3, taking the morning swim to the wall in a mark of 4:39.73. Takahashi currently sits as the 11th-fastest swimmer globally with her time of 4.38.49 from the Konami Open.

Waiting on Seiko Results

Men’s 100 Breaststroke- Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 58.90, Kosuke Kitajima (2012)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 59.63

No one cracked under a minute this morning, but our fastest swimmer was just over a tenth away. Veteran breaststroker Kosuke Kitajima hammered out a 1:00.07 from heat 6 to put his name on the map as the man to beat for the top seed, which Yasuhiro Koseki nearly did. Koseki tightened up the last 15m or so out of heat 8, but still won the heat easily with his 1:00.12 outing and now sits just .05 of a second off of the pole position of Kitajima. 

Waiting on Seiko Results

Women’s 400 Freestyle – Prelims

  • Japanese National Record – 4:05.19, Ai Shibata (2007)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 4:05.49

Chihiro Igarashi swam away with the morning’s top seed, touching in 4:12.86 to grab lane 4 for tonight’s final. The Olympic standard for Japan sits right outside of the national record (4:05.49 for the former, 4:05.49 for the latter), so Igarashi will have a shot at both during the finals session.

Waiting on Seiko Results.

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4 years ago

Hagino 4:09 in prelims!!

4 years ago

I feel Japanese trials will be third, behind USA & Australia, in terms of performance quality.

Reply to  Dee
4 years ago

Dee you snuck that bit of optimism for Oz Trials in . Wombat is still asleep in his burrow .

Years of Plain Suck
4 years ago

I hope the good folks at US Swimming are noticing that the Japanese are using the multi-colored lane lines (for example, three yellow lanes in the center) for their Olympic Trials.

Nice move! Great for the spectators!

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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