2021 Japanese Olympic Trials Day 1 Finals Live Recap

2021 JAPAN SWIM (OLYMPIC TRIALS)

MEN’S 400 IM – FINAL

JPN National Record – 4:06.05, Kosuke Hagino 2016
JPN Olympic Qualifying Time – 4:15.24

GOLD – Daiya Seto, 4:09.02, OLY Qualified
SILVER – Yuki Ikari, 4:11.88, OLY Qualified
BRONZE – Tomoru Honda, 4:13.34*

Having already qualified for the Olympic Games by way of his 2019 World Championships title didn’t stop Daiya Seto from putting on a show in the men’s 400m IM. After establishing himself as the top-seeded swimmer of the morning with a heats time of 4:12.67, the 26-year-old fired off a world-class 4:09.02 to easily take the meet title and further solidify himself among medal contenders at the home-based Games this summer.

With Seto already having booked his Tokyo ticket, the battle was really for runner-up in this race and Yuki Ikari stepped up big-time. Hitting the wall in 4:11.88, Ikari dropped over half a second off his previous lifetime best of 4:12.54 to snag silver. His mark tonight also dipped under the Japanese Swimming Federation (JASF)-mandated Olympic qualifying mark of 4:15.24, making Ikari the 2nd man to be added to the Olympic roster.

Ikari was the 2019 Summer Universiade (World University Games) champion in this event, but most looked to either Tomoru Honda or Ippei Miyamoto as the most likely candidates to clinch the 2nd Olympic roster spot. However, with his 4:11.88 time tonight, Ikari remains Japan’s 5th fastest performer all-time and now an Olympic team member.

Seto now checks-in as the top swimmer in the world this season, owning the only sub-4:10 mark on the planet. Ikari inserts himself onto the rankings list in slot #4.

 

2020-2021 LCM Men 400 IM

CarsonUSA
Foster
07/23
4:08.46
2Daiya
Seto
JPN4:09.0204/03
3Chase
Kalisz
USA4:09.0906/13
4Brendon
Smith
AUS4:09.2707/24
5Lewis
Clareburt
NZL4:09.4907/24
View Top 26»

 

MEN’S 400 FREE – FINAL

JPN National Record – 3:43.90, Kosuke Hagino 2014
JPN Olympic Qualifying Time -3:46.34

GOLD – Ryo Nakajima, 3:47.00
SILVER – Shui Kurokawa, 3:47.58
BRONZE – Ikki Imoto, 3:50.65

Falling painstaking shy of the 3:46.34 JASF-mandated Olympic qualifying time, Ryo Nakajima topped the men’s 400m free field tonight in a mark of 3:47.00. Taking over the lead from Shui Kurokawa at the 200m halfway point, Nakajima scorched his previous lifetime best of 3:49.01 from last October’s Inter-Collegiate Championships.

In fact, Nakajima’s 3:47.00 outing here, although non-Olympic qualifying, checks the 22-year-old in as Japan’s 4th fastest performer all-time in this event. Runner-up Kurokawa’s 3:47.58 time also made some noise, making him the 6th fastest Japanese man ever. Both now rank among the top 10 performers in the world this season.

Japanese Men’s All-Time LCM 400m Free Performers

  1. Kosuke Hagino – 3:43.90, 2014
  2. Takeshi Matsuda – 3:44.99, 2008
  3. Naito Ehara – 3:46.64, 2018
  4. Ryo Nakajima – 3:47.00, 2021
  5. Keisuke Yoshida – 3:47.10, 2019
  6. Shui Kurokawa – 3:47.58, 2021

WOMEN’S 400 IM – FINAL

JPN National Record – 4:30.82, Yui Ohashi 2018
JPN Olympic Qualifying Time – 4:38.53

GOLD – Yui Ohashi, 4:35.14, OLY Qualified
SILVER – Ageha Tanigawa, 4:37.90, OLY Qualified
BRONZE – Sakiko Shimizu, 4:38.11*

 

A remarkable 3 women got under the JASF-mandated threshold of 4:38.53 needed to qualify for Tokyo, led by national record holder and World Championships medalist Yui Ohashi.

Controlling the race from start to finish, 25-year-old Ohashi dropped over a second off of her previous season-best of 4:36.27 from February’s Japan Open. She now bumped herself up one spot in the world rankings to sit only behind Aussie Kaylee McKeown.

Tearing up the pool on her way to 2nd place in the race was high schooler Ageha Tanigawa, who seemingly came out of nowhere tonight to upset Sakiko Shimizu as the 2nd Olympic qualifier. Entering this meet, Tanigawa’s personal best in this 4IM event rested at the 4:39.39 she posted in September 2019 as just a 16-year-old.

Less than 2 years later, Tanigawa busted out an Olympic-qualifying time and one that would have rendered the teen as the 6th place finisher at the 2019 FINA World Championships. She now becomes the 8th fastest woman in the world this season at just 18.

Shimizu did get under the 4:38.53 Olympic mark so, if Ohashi or Tanigawa for some reason opt out of this event, the veteran would indeed get a spot.

Post-race, Ohashi told Asian media, “I’m very happy to be an Olympian. But, I’m not satisfied with the time. I was nervous and stiff.”

As for Tanigawa, she said, “I still can’t believe it. The Olympics have been a dream since I started swimming. I am so happy.”

2020-2021 LCM Women 400 IM

YuiJPN
Ohashi
07/24
4:32.08
2Kaylee
McKeown
AUS4:32.7312/13
3Emma
Weyant
USA4:32.7607/24
4Hali
Flickinger
USA4:33.9606/13
5Melanie
Margalis
USA4:34.0806/13
6Leah
Smith
USA4:34.5506/13
7Katinka
Hosszu
HUN4:34.7605/17
8Mireia
Belmonte
ESP4:35.1307/24
9Aimee
Willmott
GBR4:35.2807/24
10Yu
Yiting
CHN4:35.9401/02
View Top 26»

WOMEN’S 100 FLY – SEMIFINAL

JPN National Record – 56.08, Rikako Ikee 2018
JPN Olympic Qualifying Time -57.10

TOP 8:

  1. Suzuka Hasegawa – 58.30
  2. Ai Soma – 58.32
  3. Rikako Ikee – 58.48
  4. Chiharu Iitsuka – 58.52
  5. Nao Kobayashi – 58.61
  6. Hiroko Makino – 58.78
  7. Miyu Nakano – 59.01
  8. Karin Uchida – 59.15

20-year-old leukemia survivor Rikako Ikee has just made the women’s 100m butterfly final at this Japan Swim, clocking a semifinal effort of 58.48 to capture the 3rd seed. She’ll be chasing leader Suzuka Hasegawa, who leads the pack in 58.30, just .02 ahead of Ai Soma.

The contestants will not only be seeking the top 2 placements at tomorrow’s final but they’ll also be striving to achieve the stiff JASF-dictated Olympic-qualifying standard of 57.10.

For perspective, just one Japanese woman has ever gotten under that 57.10 mark and that is Ikee. She owns the national record in a stunning 56.08, although her even making the final after spending most of 2019 in the hospital undergoing intense treatments is an inspirational feat in itself.

MEN’S 100 BREAST – SEMIFINAL

JPN National Record – 58.78, Yasuhiro Koseki 2018
JPN Olympic Qualifying Time – 59.21

Top 8:

  1. Shoma Sato – 59.18
  2. Ryuya Mura – 59.54
  3. Ippei Watanabe – 59.76
  4. Yuya Hinomoto – 1:00.03* tie
  5. Yoshiki Yamanaka – 1:00.03* tie
  6. Yasuhiro Koseki – 1:00.10
  7. Kaede Hirakawa – 1:00.25
  8. Taishi Takada – 1:00.30

Staking his claim on the men’s 100m breaststroke was 19-year-old phenom Shoma Sato. Sato topped the men’s field with a 59.18 scorcher, his best time to date.

Entering this meet, Sato’s PB rested at the 59.55 he logged last October. However, tonight, splitting 28.16/31.02, Sato singed that outing to remain the nation’s 3rd fastest man of all-time and the 6th fastest swimmer in the world this season.

Although historically stronger in the 200m breast, holding the top time in the world and one of the fastest performances ever in 2:06.74, Sato now enters the conversation for 100m breast medal consideration. That is, provided he can replicate this type of performance come tomorrow night’s final.

Also in the mix are runner-up Ryuya Mura, dropping .02 from his previous career-best, while mainstays Ippei Watanabe and Yasuhiro Koseki lurk in the final as well.

2020-2021 LCM Men 100 Breast

AdamGBR
Peaty
07/26
57.37
2Arno
Kamminga
NED57.8007/24
3Michael
Andrew
USA58.1406/13
4Nicolo
Martinenghi
ITA58.2807/25
5Ilya
Shymanovich
BLR58.4605/17
View Top 26»

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Honest Observer
1 year ago

Does anyone know if the Japanese have to hit their qualifying standards in the final, or is it enough have done it in the earlier rounds?

Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

The Ikee comeback is amazing. Truly the heart of a champion. Sarah’s comeback is next.

Mr Piano
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

Then we got the Lochte comebac

The unoriginal Tim
Reply to  Mr Piano
1 year ago

Jeah!

Ol’ Longhorn
Reply to  Mr Piano
1 year ago

From vitamin water intoxication?

Boobstroke
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

Never have I felt more proud of someone that I’ve never met she’s truly a star, the fact that she’s contending so well amongst the top gives me hope for other races too even if she doesn’t make the 100 fly cut

AnEn
1 year ago

Any word on the results of day 1 prelims at the russian trials?

AnEn
1 year ago

I fear for the 200 breast world record after Sato smashed his 100 breast PB. 2:06.12 is a big ask, but he is the one (obviously apart from Chupkov) with the best chance to get there in my opinion.

HJones
1 year ago

59.1 for Sato. What has happened to Koseki??

Landen Hashimura
Reply to  HJones
1 year ago

I don’t know when this happened but he’s swimming for the Japanese self defense force now. Maybe the change in training is affecting him?

Aquajosh
1 year ago

58.48 for Ikee in the 100 fly semis to qualify third close behind Hasegawa (58.30) and Soma (58.32). All 16 semifinalists were under 1:00.

Shoma Sato is on World Record watch for the 200 after leading 100 breast semis with a 59.18, second is Ryuya Mura (59.54) and Ippei Watanabe at 59.76. 14 guys were under 1:01.

Dee
1 year ago

Sato could well become the first man to break 2.06 this week.

Troyy
1 year ago

Yui Ohashi wins 400 IM in 4:35.14

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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