2019 FINA WORLD AQUATICS CHAMPIONSHIPS
- All sports: Friday, July 12 – Sunday, July 28, 2019
- Pool swimming: Sunday, July 21 – Sunday, July 28, 2019
- The Nambu University Municipal Aquatics Center, Gwangju, Korea
- Meet site
- Competition Schedule
- FinaTV Live Stream
- Entry Lists
A mostly sprint-focused session, the prelims of day 6 of the 2019 FINA World Championships include prelims of the men’s 100 fly, men’s 50 free, women’s 50 fly, the women’s 200 backstroke, and the women’s 800 free. The session will end with the prelims of the men’s 4 x 200 freestyle relay where Olympic qualification is on the line.
After firing off a 46.96 to win the 100 freestyle and bring the American Record sub-47, Caeleb Dressel is going to be exciting to watch in the men’s 100 fly. Hungary’s Kristof Milak could also be in for something big in the 100 fly after demolishing Michael Phelps‘ World Record in the 200 fly earlier in the competition.
The women’s 200 backstroke will feature American teenage phenom Regan Smith, Pan Pac champion Kathleen Baker, Canada’s Taylor Ruck, and Australia’s Kaylee McKeown, who Smith has swapped the World Junior Record with on multiple occasions.
Dressel will be back in action later in the session for the men’s 50 free, where he will contend with heavyweights such as Ben Proud from Great Britain, American teammate Michael Andrew, Brazil’s Bruno Fratus, and Russian Vladimir Morozov.
Sarah Sjostrom returns to defend her 2015 and 2017 titles in the women’s 50 fly. Kelsi Dahlia, Farida Osman, Ranomi Kromowidjojo, Louise Hansson, and surprise 100 fly victor Maggie MacNeil join Sjostrom in the race.
Katie Ledecky is set to return for the prelims of the women’s 800 freestyle. After posting a 1:54.61 as the second leg of the American 4 x 200 free relay that won silver last night, Ledecky seems to be at least mostly recovered. Ledecky will get a lot of pressure from teammate Leah Smith, 200 fly champion Boglarka Kapas, 1500 freestyle champion Simona Quadarella, and 400 freestyle champion Ariarne Titmus.
The United States and Great Britain convene for a rematch in the men’s 4 x 200 freestyle relay. The British men won this event at both the 2015 and 2017 World Championships. While the U.S. has been dominant during the Olympics, they have faltered at other times.
Men’s 100 Butterfly – PRELIMS
- World Record: Michael Phelps (United States), 2009, 49.82
- World Junior Record: Kristof Milak (Hungary), 50.62
- World Championships Record: Michael Phelps (United States), 2009, 49.82
- 2017 Defending World Champion: Caeleb Dressel (United States), 49.86
Kristof Milak, Chad le Clos, Joseph Schooling, and Marius Kusch headlined heat 7 of morning prelims. Kusch turned first in 23.96, Milak 2nd in 24.00. Milak made up the ground over the second 50 to touch first in 51.42, albeit ending on a long finish. Le Clos ended up 2nd in 51.58, and Kusch 3rd in 52.05.
2016 Olympic champion Joseph Schooling finished 8th in heat 7 with a 52.95, tying for 24th overall, to miss out on the semifinals.
The 9th and final heat featured Caeleb Dressel, and like usual, Dressel explosive off the blocks and fast through the first 50 meters, turning in 23.44, just .04 over World Record Pace. Dressel pulled further away from the field on the second 50, splitting 26.84 for an overall time of 50.28, the 2nd-fastest prelims performance of all time, behind only his own 50.08 from 2017, and the 8th-fastest performance all-time.
Top 16 – SEMIFINALS QUALIFIERS
- Caeleb Dressel, United States, 50.28
- Kristof Milak, Hungary, 51.42
- Andrei Minakov, Russia, 51.54
- Chad le Clos, South Africa, 51.58
- Mehdy Metella, France, 51.65
- Vini Lanza, Brazil, 51.83
- Laszlo Cseh, Hungary, 51.88
- Matthew Temple, Australia, 51.89
- Jack Conger, United States, 51.96
- Marius Kusch, Germany, 52.05
- James Guy, Great Britain, 52.06
- Naoki Mizunuma, Japan, 52.23
- Tomer Frankel, Israel, 52.36
- Li Zhuhao, China/Yauhen Tsurkin, Bulgaria/David Morgan, Australia 52.44
Women’s 200 Backstroke – PRELIMS
- World Record: Missy Franklin (United States), 2012, 2:04.06
World Junior Record: Regan Smith (United States), 2018, 2:06.43
- World Championships Record: Missy Franklin (United States), 2012, 2:04.06
- 2017 Defending World Champion: Emily Seebohm (Australia), 2:05.68
Regan Smith started well in lane 5 of heat 3, taking the race out fast, .03 under World Record pace at 50 meters. At the 100-meter turn Smith flipped in 1:00.44, now above World Record pace. Down the third 50 she distanced herself from the field and flipped at 1:32.16, a little over a second over World Record pace. Smith was two body lengths in front of Baker by the finish, touching the wall in 2:06.01, a new World Junior Record by .42.
Katinka Hosszu controlled heat 4, but did not match the speed of Smith from the previous heat. Nonetheless, Hosszu won the heat in 2:08.34, comfortably in front of Canada’s Kylie Masse who finished 2nd in the heat in 2:09.18. Moldova’s Tatiana Salcutan was 3rd in 2:10.29.
The 5th and final heat belonged to Italian Margherita Panziera, though Australian 100 backstroke silver medalist Minna Atherton was the early leader through 50 and 100 meters. Panziera and Kaylee McKeown charged on the 3rd 50 to overtake Atheron at the 150-meter turn. Five women in heat 5 broke the 2:10 barrier.
Panziera still has the fastest time in the world this year with a 2:05.72 from April.
Top 16 – SEMIFINALS QUALIFIERS
- Regan Smith, United States, 2:06.01
- Katinka Hosszu, Hungary, 2:08.34
- Margherita Panziera, Italy, 2:08.51
- Kaylee McKeown, Australia, 2:09.71
- Kylie Masse, Canada, 2:09.18
- Minna Atherton, Australia, 2:09.32
- Katalin Burian, Hungary, 2:09.70
- Ali Galyer, New Zealand, 2:09.98
- Kathleen Baker, United States, 2:10.08
- Tatiana Salcutan, Moldova, 2:10.29
- Anastasia Avdeeva, Russia, 2:10.34
- Natsumi Sakai, Japan, 2:10.40
- Africa Zamorano, Spain, 2:10.50
- Taylor Ruck, Canada, 2:10.67
- Liu Yaxin, China, 2:10.72
- Jessa Fullalove, Great Britain, 2:11.08
Men’s 50 Freestyle – PRELIMS
- World Record: Cesar Cielo (Brazil), 2009, 20.91
- World Junior Record: Michael Andrew (United States), 2017, 21.75
- World Championships Record: Cesar Cielo (Brazil), 2009, 20.91
- 2017 Defending World Champion: Caeleb Dressel (United States), 21.15
Jaehoon Yang sent the home crowd into raptures when he won 10 heat of the men’s 50 freestyle in 22.26. Four heats remain, but Yang has an outside shot at making it back for the semifinals.
Meiron Cheruti of Israel won heat 11 in 22.06, 15/100ths ahead of the heat runner-up.
Italian Luca Dotto fell off the block prior the start of heat 14, but after the official had told the swimmers to stand down, so he was allowed to swim. Heat 14 was won by Great Britain’s Ben Proud in 21.69, the second-fastest time of the morning. Greece’s Kristian Gkolomeev touched 2nd in 21.80, and Team USA’s Michael Andrew 3rd in 21.82.
Top 16 – SEMIFINALS QUALIFIERS
- Caeleb Dressel, United States, 21.49
- Ben Proud, Great Britain, 21.69
- Vladimir Morozov, Russia, 21.70
- Bruno Fratus, Brazil, 21.71
- Shinri Shioura, Japan, 21.78
- Kristian Gkolomeev, Greece, 21.80
- Michael Andrew, United States, 21.82
- Cameron McEvoy, Australia, 21.93
- Pawe Juraszek, Poland, 21.97
- Marcelo Chierighini, Brazil, 22.03
- Ali Khalafalla, Egypt, 22.04
- Meiron Cheruiti, Israel, 22.06
- Maxim Lobanovskij, Hungary, 22.11
- Maxime Grousset, France, 22.12
- Jesse Putts, Netherlands, 22.16
- Wu Chun-Feng, Taipei/Yu Hexin, China 22.21 — SWIM-OFF REQUIRED**
**Yu Hexin won the swim-off in 22.08 versus Wu Chun-Feng‘s 22.24 and will now advance to the semifinals.
Women’s 50 Butterfly – PRELIMS
- World Record: Sarah Sjostrom (Sweden), 2014, 24.43
- World Junior Record: Rikako Ikee (Japan), 2017, 25.33
- World Championships Record: Sarah Sjostrom (Sweden), 2014, 24.43
- 2017 Defending World Champion: Sarah Sjostrom (Sweden), 24.60
Egypt’s Farida Osman, the 2017 bronze medalist and Egyptian Record holder in the 50 and 100 butterfly, won heat 5 in 25.71, barely holding off Canada’s Penny Oleksiak who touched 2nd in 25.73. 100 butterfly 2019 World Champion Maggie MacNeil posted a 26.14 to place 3rd in the heat, though according to commentators, took 6 breaths in the 50 meter effort.
Kelsi Dahlia of the United States won heat 6 comfortably in 25.70. Italy’s Elena di Liddo finished 2nd in 26.03.
Sarah Sjostrom was fully in control of the 7th and final heat of the women’s 50 fly, winning in 25.39, half-a-second over sprint superstar Ranomi Kromowidjojo from the Netherlands who touched 2nd in 25.86.
Top 16 – SEMIFINALS QUALIFIERS
- Sarah Sjostrom, Sweden, 25.39
- Kelsi Dahlia, United States, 25.70
- Farida Osman, Egypt, 25.71
- Penny Oleksiak, Canada, 25.73
- Ranomi Kromowidjojo, Netherlands, 25.86
- Louise Hansson, Sweden, 25.97
- Elena di Liddo, Italy, 26.03
- Marie Wattel, France, 26.07
- Jeanette Ottesen, Denmark, 26.09
- Wang Yichun, China, 26.13
- Maggie MacNeil, Canada/Zhang Yufei, China/Brianna Throssel, Australia, 26.14
- Kimberly Buys, Belgium, 26.23
- Anna Ntountounaki, Greece, 26.26
- Arina Surkova, Russia/Emilie Beckmann, Denmark, 26.32 — SWIM-OFF REQUIRED**
**Surkova won the swim-off in 26.13 to Beckmann’s 26.24 and will advance to the semis as the 16th seed.
Men’s 4 x 200 Freestyle Relay – PRELIMS
- World Record: United States (Phelps, Berens, Walters, Lochte), 2009, 6:58.55
- World Junior Record: Hungary (Marton, Milak, Hollo, Nemeth), 2017, 7:10.95
- World Championships Record: United States (Phelps, Berens, Walters, Lochte), 2009, 6:58.55
- 2017 Defending World Champions: Great Britain (Milne, Grainger, Scott, Guy), 7:01.70
The Italian team dominated heat 3, and posted the fastest time overall with a 7:04.97. The Italians put together four good 200s thanks to Filippo Megli (1:46.79), Matteo Ciampi (1:46.42), Stefano Ballo (1:45.66), and Stefano di Cola (1:46.10).
The United States had dramatic ups and downs within its 7 minutes and 6 seconds of swimming. First, Andrew Seliskar led off in a respectable 1:45.71, handing off to Jack Conger who put up a 1:47.99. Conger handed over to Jack LeVant who delivered a 1:47.57, putting the US in a precarious position at the 600-meter turn. Apple then took over and brought Team USA back into the conversation with his 1:45.59 anchor leg.
The United States had a rough time with this relay, but Zach Apple redeemed with his 1:45.59, the 3rd-fastest split in the entire field behind only 200 freestyle silver medalist Katsuhiro Matsumoto from Japan, who split a 1:45.31 to help Japan to a 9th-place finish overall, and Russian anchor leg Mikhail Vekovishchev, who registered a 1:45.41.
Great Britain and Germany tied in for 3rd in heat 2. Many fans (including the commentators) were cheering for any five teams in heat 3 to finish faster than 7:08.45, forcing a swim-off for the 4 x 200 freestyle relay. This did not come to pass, and Great Britain and Germany ended up tying for 7th in the heats, meaning both teams get in without further contest. Japan placed 9th as 8th place was absorbed by the tie.
Top 8 – FINALS QUALIFIERS
- Italy, 7:04.97
- Russia, 7:05.28
- United States, 7:06.86
- Australia, 7:06.97
- China, 7:07.05
- Brazil, 7:07.05
- Great Britain/Germany, 7:08.45
Other Olympic Qualifiers:
- Japan, 7:09.23
- Israel, 7:11.99
- Poland, 7:12.01
- Switzerland, 7:12.08
Women’s 800 Freestyle – PRELIMS
- World Record: Katie Ledecky (United States), 2016, 8:04.79
- World Junior Record: Katie Ledecky (United States), 2017, 8:11.00
- World Championships Record: Katie Ledecky (United States), 8:07.39
- 2017 Defending World Champion: Katie Ledecky (United States), 8:07.39
And with heat 5, Katie Ledecky and Ariarne Titmus dive in to vie for a spot in the championship final. 400 freestyle bronze medalist Leah Smith also races, and through the first 200 meters hangs tight with Ledecky and Titmus, actually leading by a tenth at the 200-meter turn.
Smith leads at 700. Ledecky surges and Titmus shuts it down, riding at Ledecky’s feet for an easy finish securely into the final. Smith and Ledecky fight one another hard on the final 50, but Smith got her hand on the wall first in 8:17.23 to Ledecky’s 8:17.42. Titmus finished 3rd in the heat in 8:19.43.
After failing to make the finals in the 200 IM, 400 freestyle, and her specialty, the 200 fly, Spain’s Mireia Belmonte qualifies 7th for the 800 freestyle in 8:28.22. Belmonte did race in the final of the 1500, but only got in because of Ledecky’s withdrawal, ultimately finishing 8th in the final.