2021 Russian Olympic Trials: Day 3 Finals Live Recap


Olympic spots will be on the line in four different events on Day 3 of the Russian National Swimming Championships in Kazan, with finals in the men’s 200 free, women’s 100 back, men’s 100 back and the women’s 100 breast.

Among the big names aiming to add their names to the roster today include 2016 Olympic medalists Evgeny Rylov and Yuliya Efimova, along with reigning European champion Kliment Kolesnikov.

In addition to the four finals in Olympic events, we’ll also see semis and finals in the men’s 50 breast and women’s 50 fly, and three additional rounds of semi-finals in the women’s 200 free, men’s 200 fly and women’s 200 IM.

Day 3 Finals Live Stream:

Men’s 50 Breast Semi-Finals

  1. Kirill Strelnikov, 26.89
  2. Andrey Nikolaev, 26.99
  3. Vsevolod Zanko, 27.25
  4. Dmitriy Balandin, 27.39
  5. Oleg Kostin, 27.47
  6. Danil Semyaninov, 27.56
  7. Vladislav Gerasimenko, 27.62
  8. Evgenii Somov, 27.65

Kirill Strelnikov became the third Russian men to break the 27-second barrier in the 50 breaststroke from the second semi-final, clocking 26.89 to down his previous PB of 27.14 and move into fourth in the world this year. Strelnikov had gone that 27.14 at the Russian Championships in October.

Andrey Nikolaev decisively won the first heat in 26.99, tying his best time set at the 2019 World Championships. The performance moves him up from 12th to fifth in the 2020-21 world rankings, having previously been 27.33 at that same National meet in October.

Women’s 50 Fly Semi-Finals

  1. Arina Surkova, 25.82
  2. Svetlana Chimrova, 26.21
  3. Daria Klepikova, 26.37
  4. Daria Tatarinova, 26.43
  5. Sophia Spodarenko, 26.44
  6. Anita Grischenko, 26.58
  7. Rozaliya Nasretdinova, 26.79
  8. Polina Malakhova, 26.83

22-year-old Arina Surkova took .09 off her season-best to lead the women’s 50 fly semis in 25.82, maintaining her spot as the sixth-fastest woman in 2020-21. Surkova, the national record holder at 25.62, went 25.91 in October.

Svetlana Chimrova, the only other Russian woman who has broken 26 seconds in her career, took second to Surkova in the second semi in 26.21, while youngster Daria Klepikova (born in 2005) brought her best down to 26.37 in the first heat to qualify third for the final.

Women’s 200 Free Semi-Finals

  1. Anna Egorova, 1:58.21
  2. Veronika Andrusenko, 1:58.76
  3. Anastasia Guzhenkova, 1:58.88
  4. Valeria Salamatina, 1:59.03
  5. Daria Mullakaeva, 1:59.07
  6. Alexandra Bykova, 1:59.66
  7. Ekaterina Nikonova, 1:59.83
  8. Arina Openysheva, 2:00.22

400 free winner Anna Egorova made her move on the final 50 in the women’s 200 free semis, closing in 29.63 to comfortably win the second heat and qualify first for the final in 1:58.21.

Egorova’s best time of 1:57.58, set in December, sits three-tenths shy of the FINA ‘A’ cut.

Veronika Andrusenko, the national record holder in this event, rebounded well after a third-place finish in the 400 yesterday, edging Anastasia Guzhenkova to win the first semi-final in 1:58.76.

Andrusenko has a best of 1:55.08, set at the 2017 Worlds where she finished fourth, but since the beginning of 2019 her fastest has been 1:57.00.

Guzhenkova is the second-fastest Russian ever, having gone 1:56.77 at the 2018 European Championships.

Men’s 200 Free Final

  • Russian Record: 1:43.90, Danila Izotov (2009)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 1:47.02
  1. Martin Malyutin, 1:45.18
  2. Ivan Girev, 1:45.68
  3. Alexander Shchegolev, 1:45.82

In the absolutely stacked men’s 200 free final, Martin Malyutin roared home in 26.33 on the last 50 to overtake Alexander Shchegolev and Ivan Girev and win the event in a time of 1:45.18, lowering his best time of 1:45.46 and moving into second in the world this season.

An incredible four men broke 1:46 and a total of six were under the FINA ‘A’ cut, with Girev (1:45.68) edging out Shchegolev (1:45.82) to earn a berth on his first Olympic team. Girev set a best time of 1:45.49 in the semis, which now ranks him third in the world this season.

Shchegolev cracked 1:46 for the first time, having previously been 1:46.57, and 2016 Olympic finalist Aleksandr Krasnykh closed strong in 26.58, but ran out of room and ended up fourth in 1:45.88.

Russians now occupy four of the top-seven spots in the world for 2020-21.

Daniil Shatalov (1:46.33) and Mikhail Dovgalyuk (1:46.38) were fifth and sixth. Dovgalyuk was notably a best of 1:45.56 at the 2019 Worlds.

Women’s 100 Back Final

  1. Maria Kameneva, 59.19
  2. Anastasia Fesikova, 59.51
  3. Daria Vaskina, 1:00.71

Maria Kameneva followed up her personal best swim in last night’s semi-finals with another strong performance in the women’s 100 back final, edging out veteran Anastasia Fesikova to earn her first Olympic berth in 59.19.

Sitting third at the 50 in 29.38, Kameneva had a phenomenal back-half of 29.81 to earn the victory.

The 21-year-old  set a best of 59.10 in the semis that ranks her fourth in the world this season.

Fesikova, 30, gets on a fourth Olympic team after putting together a very impressive 59.51, her fastest swim since 2018. Fesikova is the national record holder at 58.18, done way back in 2009 when she won the silver medal at the World Championships in Rome.

Daria Vaskina, who swam a time of 59.46 just two years ago, took third in 1:00.71.

Men’s 100 Back Final

  • Russian Record: 51.97, Evgeny Rylov (2019)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 53.85
  1. Evgeny Rylov, 52.12
  2. Kliment Kolesnikov, 52.24
  3. Grigory Tarasevich, 52.93

One of the most highly anticipated finals of the meet delivered in the men’s 100 backstroke, as Evgeny Rylov and Kliment Kolesnikov battled stroke-for-stroke through the majority of the race.

Flipping at virtually the same time at the 50 (Rylov – 25.43, Kolesnikov – 25.45), Rylov pulled away off the turn, Kolesnikov caught him, and then Rylov had the finishing kick to pick up the win in a very fast time of 52.12, rocketing him to first in the world rankings this season.

Rylov is the National Record holder and fourth-fastest performer in history with his 51.97 from the 2019 World Championships.

Kolesnikov, who entered the meet having never broken 52.5, has now done so three times, as he takes another .18 from his semi-final time in 52.24. That time makes him the second-fastest swimmer in the world this season and puts him in the top-10 all-time, tying Japan’s Ryosuke Irie for ninth.

All-Time Performers, Men’s 100 Back (LCM)

  1. Ryan Murphy (USA), 51.85 – 2016
  2. Xu Jiayu (CHN), 51.86 – 2017
  3. Aaron Peirsol (USA), 51.94 – 2009
  4. Evgeny Rylov (RUS), 51.97 – 2019
  5. Matt Grevers (USA), 52.08 – 2012
  6. Camille Lacourt (FRA) / Mitch Larkin (AUS) , 52.11 – 2010/2015
  7. David Plummer (USA), 52.12 – 2016
  8. Ryosuke Irie (JPN), / Kliment Kolesnikov (RUS) 52.24 – 2009/2021

This is also Kolesnikov’s first Olympic berth.

Not to be overshadowed was the performance from Grigory Tarasevich, the former Louisville Cardinal, who broke 53 seconds for the first time in 52.93. This marks Tarasevich’s first best time in the event in five years, having set his previous best of 53.03 in April 2016.

Though he fails to make the Olympic team in the event, Tarasevich now ranks sixth in the world this season.

Women’s 100 Breast Final

  • Russian Record: 1:04.36, Yuliya Efimova (2017)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 1:07.07
  1. Evgeniia Chikunova, 1:06.06
  2. Yuliya Efimova, 1:06.22
  3. Tatiana Belonogoff, 1:06.76

It was rising star Evgeniia Chikunova getting the better of veteran Yuliya Efimova in the women’s 100 breast final, as Chikunova closed in a blistering 34.40 to earn the win in 1:06.06 to Efimova’s 1:06.22.

The 16-year-old’s time lowers her previous best of 1:06.49, set in the semis, and also knocks off Efimova’s Russian Youth Record of 1:06.08 set back in 2008. Chikunova also qualifies for her first Olympic team, and moves into fourth in the world rankings this season.

Efimova, who turned 29 two days ago, qualifies for her fourth Olympic team in a season-best 1:06.22. She was the Olympic silver medalist in the event in 2016.

The overall field was a competitive one with five women sub-1:07, as Tatiana Belonogoff (1:06.76) closed well in 34.78 to take third over Maria Temnikova (1:06.84) and Nika Godun (1:06.98).

Men’s 200 Fly Semi-Finals

  • Russian Record: 1:54.31, Nikolay Skvortsov (2008)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 1:56.48
  1. Aleksandr Pribytok, 1:56.57
  2. Alexander Kudashev, 1:56.61
  3. Vadim Klimenishchev, 1:57.55
  4. Egor Pavlov, 1:57.87
  5. Luis Vega, 1:58.58
  6. Aleksandr Kharlanov, 1:59.04
  7. Dmitry Novichkov, 1:59.74
  8. Peter Zhikharev, 1:59.77

Aleksandr Pribytok (1:56.57) and Alexander Kudashev (1:56.61) put up the top two times in the men’s 200 fly semis from the second heat, with Pribytok using a strong back-half to touch first.

Pribytok holds a best time of 1:56.16, set in 2016, while Kudashev has been as fast as 1:55.63 at the 2019 WUGs.

Vadim Klimenishchev, who set a PB of 1:56.55 in October, won the first semi to qualify third overall in 1:57.55.

Women’s 200 IM Semi-Finals

  • Russian Record: 2:09.56, Viktoriya Andreyeva (2016)
  • FINA ‘A’ Cut: 2:12.56
  1. Anastasia Sorokina, 2:12.90
  2. Maria Astashkina, 2:14.21
  3. Maria Temnikova, 2:14.77
  4. Irina Krivonogova, 2:14.79
  5. Alexandra Denisenko, 2:15.32
  6. Anna Chernysheva, 2:15.78
  7. Margarita Dryamina, 2:15.96
  8. Victoria Starostina, 2:16.69

16-year-old Anastasia Sorokina smashed both her personal best time and the existing Russian Youth Record from the first semi-final of the women’s 200 IM, registering a time of 2:12.90.

Sorokina’s previous best stood at 2:14.38 from the 2018 European Juniors, and she also lowers the national junior mark of 2:14.15 set by Anna Chernysheva in October.

Maria Astashkina set a personal best by over two seconds to qualify second for the final in 2:14.21, and Maria Temnikova came right out of the 100 breast final to win the second heat and advance in third (2:14.77).

With no one in the field holding a best time faster than Sorokina’s swim tonight, it looks like it will be her against the clock tomorrow, as she’ll look to get under the FINA ‘A’ cut of 2:12.56 and get on the Olympic team.

Men’s 50 Breast Final

  1. Kirill Strelnikov, 26.78
  2. Vsevolod Zanko, 27.28
  3. Vladislav Gerasimenko, 27.29

Kirill Strelnikov picked up his second best time of the session en route to easily winning the men’s 50 breast by a full half-second, clocking 26.78 to narrowly miss Kirill Prigoda‘s Russian Record by .06.

Strelnikov entered the meet with a best time of 27.14, and then had broken 27 for the first time in semis earlier in the session in 26.89. He remains third in the world this season.

Strelnikov’s Moscow teammate Vsevolod Zanko snagged second in 27.28, .03 slower than the semis, with Vladislav Gerasimenko hitting a best of 27.29 in third.

Oleg Kostin took fourth in 27.33, and Andrey Nikolaev, who went 26.99 in the semis, slid to fifth in 27.33.

Women’s 50 Fly Final

  1. Arina Surkova, 25.75
  2. Daria Klepikova, 25.98
  3. Svetlana Chimrova, 26.10

Arina Surkova booked her second win of the meet in the women’s 50 fly, lowering her season-best from the semis (25.82) down to 25.75 to move up into fifth in the world this season. Surkova set the Russian Record of 25.62 in 2019.

The third Russian Youth Record of the night went down at the hands of Daria Klepikova, as the 16-year-old clocked 25.98 to lower her previous mark of 26.20 set in December.

Veteran Svetlana Chimrova (26.10) and youngster Daria Tatarinova (26.18) took third and fourth.

Mixed 4×100 Free Relay

  • Russian Record: 3:22.72 (2019)
  1. St. Petersburg, 3:25.43
  2. Novosibirsk Region, 3:31.23
  3. Moscow, 3:33.58

Andrei Minakov really set the tone for St. Petersburg in the mixed 400 free relay, blasting the team to a big early advantage with a 47.84 lead-off leg which marks his second time breaking 48 seconds in the 100 free.

Minakov set the world junior record last year in 47.57, and on Day 1 of this meet, had split 47.94 (with a takeover) on the men’s relay.

Alexander Shchegolev (48.59), Maria Kameneva (54.59) and Daria S. Ustinova (54.41) finished things off for St. Petersburg as they won by almost six seconds in 3:25.43.

Novosibirsk Region took second in 3:31.23, and Moscow was third in 3:33.58. The most noteworthy swims on those relays came from Ekaterina Nikonova (55.04) anchoring Novosibirsk and Vladimir Dubinin (49.52) leading off Moscow.

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Ol' Longhorn
5 months ago

The picture of Rylov doing the flex is hilarious.

Troll in the Dungeon
Reply to  Ol' Longhorn
5 months ago

Time to see whether Russia should be favourites for the 4x200m free in Tokyo.

Reply to  Troll in the Dungeon
5 months ago

Pretty sure you can call them a contender now with 4 guys sub 146

Troll in the Dungeon
Reply to  Swammer
5 months ago

Was about to post this lol – Definitely a prospect for gold – will have to wait and see what the likes of Aus, USA and GB throw down in the coming weeks/months.

Reply to  Troll in the Dungeon
5 months ago

Absolutely don’t see GB having four better individual times. Not sure about Australia and the US.

Troll in the Dungeon
Reply to  AnEn
5 months ago

They don’t need 4 better individual times. It’s a relay, AnEn.

Reply to  Troll in the Dungeon
5 months ago

I know. My point was that i absolutely don’t think that the 4 fastest british guys will have a better average than the 4 fastest russian guys, which means that Russia should be favored over GB.

Reply to  Swammer
5 months ago

Think it will be a crap shoot again….like the WC.

Kolesnikov the missile
5 months ago

51,81 is coming.

5 months ago

4 under 1:46 and another one pretty close. Help. What a race!

5 months ago

I think only Australia will be able to match Russia’s 4×200 depth in Tokyo. Perhaps no single race changing leg in the Russian line-up yet, but Girev, Shchegolev and Malyutin are young so could step it up. Great racing!

Last edited 5 months ago by Dee
BDL Swim
Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

The Russians are definitely in the mix for gold in Tokyo. Four sub-1:46s is no joke and shows a ton of depth. But if Seliskar, Pieroni, Apple, Haas, Smith are all “on” the Americans can also have several sub-1:46s and be very competitive for gold. And who knows, maybe we’ll get a surprise leg from an up-and-comer like Kibler or Urlando or Foster!

Last edited 5 months ago by BDL Swim
Reply to  BDL Swim
5 months ago

Unless my memory is failing me, the US has had three men sub 1.46 since Jan 2018 (Haas, Sekiskar, Pieroni) – Russia had four today. I acknowledge that the US has an unexposed talent pool (Smith, Apple etc), but where are these sub 1.45s coming from?

Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

yeah sub 1:45’s would break the world record lol

Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

The men’s 200 free has been mired into mediocre since agnel retired, but I think
this will be a better year. Matsumoto already went 144, I think we will see several more 144s this year

Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

Kibler foster and smith are untapped in long course. Conger could make a come back as well

Reply to  Swimmer2
5 months ago

Sorry, i forgot about lord Dean farris, who was a 1:46 in 2018 and 1:29 in yards

Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

Don’t sleep on Brazil!

Reply to  Gus
5 months ago

For what? Them winning a medal in men’s 800 free relay would probably be the biggest surprise in swimming history.

Reply to  Dee
5 months ago

I think Russia is the favourite now until some other country shows otherwise.

Chalmers > Dressel
5 months ago

4 russians doing 1:45 in the 200 free, damn that relay will be lethal

Reply to  Chalmers > Dressel
5 months ago

Big request from swimswam…I wonder if they can establish an article that they continually update this spring with an ongoing ‘power rankings’ of sort of all of the relay events, using whatever evidence including best times the past 18 months or so plus all the recent National trials events. Throw in additional possibilities, ie Seto into the Japanese 4×2 etc…

5 months ago

Kameneva et Fesikova are in. 4th games for Fesikova I believe.

Corn Pop
Reply to  ooo
5 months ago

The Fesikov baby is about 6 & both mum & dad still top swimmers. I think this is a better arrangement, Kids watching parents at comps .

5 months ago

Where is Seto????

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
Reply to  HoosierDaddy
5 months ago

In Japan.

Reply to  HoosierDaddy
5 months ago

A few hours ago in another location

5 months ago

Controversial statement but Russia should not be allowed to enter a relay, what’s the point of a nation being banned if swimmers from that nation can come together for a relay.

Troll in the Dungeon
Reply to  Swimmer1234
5 months ago

Would you be posting this if they hadn’t just dropped 4 1:45s? Perhaps the ‘point’ lies somewhere in the Olympic values of friendship, excellence and respect. You shouldn’t deprive swimmers from the same country from competing together IF they have all individually passed doping controls and standards. They shouldn’t be punished as athletes because of the actions of their government.

Reply to  Troll in the Dungeon
5 months ago

The point of banning Russia from the Olympics is that they had an extensive state sponsored doping regime. In athletics it’s guilty until proven innocent, and the Russian federation has shown they clearly will do anything to circumvent doping controls on behalf of all their athletes. A relay composed of four Russians is representing Russia and should not be allowed. It’s amazing the contrast in support condemnations of swimmers like Sun Yang (rightfully) get on this site vs those of Russian swimming. Even if you believe the added scrutiny of the past few years has successfully cleaned up their testing labs (it hasn’t), any Russian or Soviet swim from the past 30-40 years is suspect and should be treated as… Read more »

Troll in the Dungeon
Reply to  Reid
5 months ago

I get the frustration, but ‘guilty’ at the state level shouldn’t translate to ‘guilty’ at the individual level if those individual athletes have proven as far as they are able to that they are clean.

Last edited 5 months ago by Troll in the Dungeon

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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