2022 Short Course Worlds: Day 1 Prelims Live Recap


Day 1 of the 2022 Short Course World Championships kicks off with prelims of the women’ 400 freestyle, as well as both women’s and men’s 100 backstroke, 50 butterfly, 200 IM, and 4×100 freestyle relay. To cap off the session, we’ve got the two slowest heats of the men’s 1500 freestyle, with the fastest heat set to race with finals.

We’ve already had a couple of notable scratches on the first day of the meet. World record holder Li Bingjie has reportedly scratched out of the women’s 400 freestyle, though she currently remains on the heat sheet. Additionally, long course world record holder and world champion Thomas Ceccon has scratched out of the 100 backstroke, and Ben Proud has dropped the 50 butterfly.

Despite the scratches, there’s still plenty of exciting racing in store, including in the women’s 200 IM, which projects to be one of the most competitive races of the meet with Yui OhashiKaylee McKeown, Alex Walsh, Kate Douglass, Yu Yitingand Sydney Pickrem set to clash. Don’t expect them to show their full hand in prelims, but rather set themselves up to move through the rounds easily before bringing it all for the finals.

Women’s 400m Freestyle – Prelims

  • World Record: 3:51.30 – Li Bingjie, CHN (2022)
  • World Junior Record: 3:52.80 – Summer McIntosh, CAN (2022)
  • Championship Record: 3:53.92 – Ariarne Titmus, AUS (2018)
  • 2021 Champion: 3:55.83 – Li Bingjie

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Erika Fairweather (NZL) – 3:58.27
  2. Lani Pallister (AUS) – 3:59.50
  3. Erin Gemmell (USA) – 4:00.49
  4. Leah Smith (USA) – 4:00.71
  5. Namba Miyu (JPN) – 4:00.97
  6. Kobori Waka (JPN) – 4:02.05
  7. Katja Fain (SLO) – 4:02.13
  8. Leah Neale (AUS) – 4:02.30

South Africa’s Stephanie Houtman got things rolling in the first heat of the women’s 400 freestyle with a 4:13.16, setting a new lifetime best by just over a second.

Heat 2 saw French ASU commit Alexa Reyna grab the lead early. The Czech Republic’s Anja Crevar caught her with about 100 meters to go, and they exchanged the lead several times. At the finish, it was Reyna who got her hand on the wall first, .18 seconds ahead of Crevar–4:08.44 to 4:08.62.

In the first seeded heat, 22-year-old Lani Pallister became the first swimmer in prelims to get under the 4:00 barrier, clocking 3:59.50. American Leah Smith was second in 4:00.71.

The rumors were true– world record holder Li Bingjie did not step up to the blocks in heat 4. Teenagers Erin Gemmell and Erika Fairweather took the race out stroke for stroke. Fairweather pulled away from Gemmell in the back half of the race. The Kiwi took the win, touching in a huge personal best of 3:58.27 to grab lane 4 for the final. Gemmell finished second in 4:00.49, with Japan’s Namba Miyu earning third in the heat with 4:00.97.

Women’s 100m Backstroke – Prelims

  • World Record: 54.89 – Minna Atherton, AUS (2019)
  • World Junior Record: 55.75 – Bella Sims, USA (2022)
  • Championship Record: 55.03 – Katinka Hosszu, HUN (2014)
  • 2021 Champion: 55.20 – Louise Hansson, SWE

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Louise Hansson (SWE) – 56.04
  2. Ingrid Wilm (CAN) – 56.15
  3. Mollie O’Callaghan (AUS) – 56.35
  4. Hanna Rosvall (SWE) – 56.57
  5. Kira Toussaint (NED) – 56.62
  6. Simona Kubova (CZE) – 56.76
  7. Isabelle Stadden (USA) – 56.85
  8. Pauline Mathieu (FRA) – 56.88
  9. Claire Curzan (USA) – 56.90
  10. Maaike de Waard (NED)/Kylie Masse (CAN) – 57.01
  11. Kaylee McKeown (AUS) – 57.11
  12. Wan Letian (CHN) – 57.49
  13. Medi Harris (GBR)/Sayaka Akase (JPN) – 57.51
  14. Silvia Scalia (ITA) – 57.54

After about a 15 minute delay due to a technical issue with the flags, Macedonia’s Weng Lam Cheang won heat 1 with a 1:04.74. In heat 2, Mexico’s Miranda Grana Perez won handily with a 58.80, the only swimmer in the heat to break a minute and beating her seed by about five seconds. Things speed up in heat 3, as the top five were all under a minute. Great Britain’s Medi Harris took the heat win, touching in 57.51.

Kira Toussaint fractured her finger during practice earlier this fall, but she looked strong in heat 4, taking the win in 56.52. Maaike de Waard took things out with her, but fell to fifth. Isabelle Stadden moved through the field on the final 25 to touch third.

Heat 5 featured some of the top contenders for the podium, including Kylie Masse, Kaylee McKeown, and Claire CurzanHowever, it was Sweden’s Hanna Rosvall who got her hand on the wall first, in a personal best of 56.57. Curzan was next in 56.90, while Masse and McKeown both swam relaxed 57.01 and 57.11, respectively.

In the final heat, defending champion Louise Hansson was tightly bunched with Ingrid Wilm and Mollie O’Callaghan heading into the final strokes. It was Hansson who eked out the win, posting the top time of the morning in 56.04.

Men’s 100m Backstroke – Prelims

  • World Record: 48.33 – Coleman Stewart, USA (2021)
  • World Junior Record: 48.90 – Kliment Kolesnikov, RUS (2017)
  • Championship Record: 48.95 – Stanislav Donetc, RUS (2010)
  • 2021 Champion: 49.23 – Shaine Casas, USA

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Ryan Murphy (USA) – 49.34
  2. Mewen Tomac (FRA) – 49.99
  3. Apostolos Christou (GRE) – 50.01
  4. Thierry Bollin (SUI) – 50.10
  5. Kacper Stokowski (POL) – 50.14
  6. Isaac Cooper (AUS) – 50.16
  7. Lorenzo Mora (ITA) – 50.18
  8. Yohann Ndoye Brouard (FRA) – 50.21
  9. Pieter Coetze (RSA) – 50.26
  10. Ole Braunschweig (GER)/Irie Ryosuke (JPN) – 50.37
  11. Tomas Franta (CZE) – 50.60
  12. Luke Greenbank (GBR) – 50.72
  13. Ksawery Masiuk (POL) – 50.84
  14. Markus Lie (NOR) – 50.89
  15. Marek Ulrich (GER) – 50.92

Isaac Cooper was out fast in heat 3, flipping in 23.71. Switzerland’s Thierry Bollin got him at the touch, 50.10 to 50.16. That would launch him up the standings, earning him 4th seed for semifinals. In the next heat, Ryan Murphy used his strong underwaters to open up a gap to the rest of the field. He clocked 49.34 to win, just .11 seconds off his lifetime best 49.23.

In heat 5, Mewen Tomac powered ahead of Italian record holder Lorenzo Mora to win the heat. He posted 49.99, dipping under 50 seconds for the first time in his career. Mora touched second, with veteran Irie Ryosuke grabbing third in the heat.

In heat 6, 2021 bronze medalist Robert Glinta seemed to slip off the start, he was out the back of the field almost immediately. It was Apostolos Christou who earned the win, clocking 50.01 for the third fastest time in prelims.

Hunter Armstrong finished 17th with a 50.93, missing the semifinals. This was his second ever SCM 100 backstroke; his first was in Indianapolis, where he placed 9th missing finals. Notably, the United States chooses their team for this meet based on long course times, which means that they left the SCM world record holder in this event, Coleman Stewart, at home.

Women’s 50m Butterfly – Prelims

  • World Record: 24.38 – Therese Alshammar, SWE (2009)
  • World Junior Record: 24.55 – Claire Curzan, USA (2021)
  • Championship Record: 24.44 – Ranomi Kromowidjojo, NED (2021)
  • 2021 Champion: 24.44 – Ranomi Kromowidjojo, NED

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Zhang Yufei (CHN) – 24.75
  2. Melanie Henique (FRA) – 24.88
  3. Sara Junevik (SWE) – 25.04
  4. Torri Huske (USA) – 25.11
  5. Maggie MacNeil (CAN) – 25.13
  6. Wang Yichun (CHN) – 25.28
  7. Beryl Gastaldello (FRA) – 25.30
  8. Soma Ai (JPN)/Silvia Di Pietro (ITA) – 25.32
  9. Maaike de Waard (NED) – 25.40
  10. Claire Curzan (USA) – 25.43
  11. Tsuda Moe (JPN) – 25.47
  12. Katerine Savard (CAN) – 25.50
  13. Julie Kepp Jensen (DEN) – 25.51
  14. Helena Gasson (NZL) – 25.63
  15. Alexandria Perkins (AUS) – 25.65

In the first of the circle-seeded heats, Sara Junevik out-touched Torri Huske, 25.04 to 25.11. That’s a new personal best for the Swede, continuing their strong performance through the first few events of this meet. France’s Beryl Gastaldello was third in that same heat in 25.30.

Maggie MacNeil was slow off the blocks, which was all the advantage that French record holder Melanie Henique needed. Henique registered the first sub-25 swim of the session in 24.88, while MacNeil, the 2021 100 fly champion, was further back in 25.13.

The final heat was dominated by Zhang Yufei, who posted the fastest qualifying time with a 24.75. Her teammate Wang Yichun was second in the heat, qualifying for semifinals sixth overall.

Several of these swimmers were on their second swims of the morning, including both Maaike de Waard and Claire Curzan, who both swam the 100 backstroke one event earlier.

Men’s 50m Butterfly – Prelims

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Noe Ponti (SUI)/Teong Tzen Wei (SGP) – 22.01
  2. Szebasztian Szabo (HUN) – 22.07
  3. Dylan Carter (TTO) – 22.11
  4. Marius Kusch (GER) – 22.19
  5. Matthew Temple (AUS) – 22.30
  6. Chad le Clos (RSA) – 22.31
  7. Ilya Kharun (CAN)/Matteo Rivolta (ITA) – 22.32
  8. Michael Andrew (USA) – 22.34
  9. Kawamoto Takeshi (JPN) – 22.38
  10. Daniel Zaitsev (EST) – 22.41
  11. Simon Bucher (AUT) – 22.44
  12. Nicholas Santos (BRA) – 22.46
  13. Youssef Ramadan (EGY) – 22.50
  14. Florent Manaudou (FRA)/Nyls Korstanje (NED) – 22.53

In heat 6, 26-year-old Gabriel Santos got off to a fast start, but Jan Sefl closed the gap, and was able to out-touch the Brazilian at the wall–22.84 to 22.89. Entered with a long course time, Michael Andrew was in an unseeded heat 7, and easily took the win there with a 22.34 to post the fastest time to that point by a wide margin.

Dylan Carter kept his World Cup momentum rolling, using his underwaters to win the heat ahead of Florent Manaudou. In his first swim of his first major international meet representing Canada, Ilya Kharun set a new world junior record, cutting .02 seconds off Andrei Minakov‘s record with a 22.32.

Switzerland’s Noe Ponti dominated the penultimate heat with a 22.01. Thomas Ceccon, who scratched the 100 backstroke to focus on this race, finished well back in sixth with a 22.57. In the final heat, Singapore’s Teong Tzen Wei matched Ponti’s time with a 22.01, tying them for the fastest qualifying time. Teong’s time is a new Asian record,

World record holder Nicholas Santos posted 22.46, moving through to the semifinals in 14th.

There will be a swim-off for 16th place between Florent Manaudou and Nyls Korstanje, who are tied for the spot with a 22.53.

Women’s 200 IM – Prelims

  • World Record: 2:01.86 – Katinka Hosszu, HUN (2014)
  • World Junior Record: 2:04.48 – Yu Yiting, CHN (2021)
  • Championship Record: 2:01.86 – Katinka Hosszu, HUN (2014)
  • 2021 Champion: 2:04.29 – Sydney Pickrem, CAN

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Kate Douglass (USA) – 2:04.39
  2. Alex Walsh (USA) – 2:05.94
  3. Marrit Steenbergen (NED) – 2:06.01
  4. Kaylee McKeown (AUS) – 2:06.07
  5. Charlotte Bonnet (FRA) – 2:06.70
  6. Sydney Pickrem (CAN) – 2:07.15
  7. Abbie Wood (GBR) – 2:07.20
  8. Sara Franceschi (ITA) – 2:07.25

Heat 3 gave us a potential preview of the final, as it featured Alex Walsh, Kaylee McKeownand Yui Ohashi. Walsh and McKeown were together at the halfway mark, with Walsh gaining a bit of a lead on the breaststroke leg. McKeown came back on the freestyle leg, but Walsh got her hand on the wall first, posting a 2:05.94 while McKeown earned second in 2:06.07.

France’s Charlotte Bonnet grabbed third in 2:06.70. Tokyo Olympic champion Yui Ohashi was fourth in 2:08.12, putting her in danger of missing the final.

Sydney Pickrem made her move on the breaststroke in the next heat, passing Korea’s Seoyeong Kim. Pickrem out-touched Sara Franceschi, 2:07.15 to 2:07.25. Pickrem’s teammate Mary-Sophie Harvey had an excellent freestyle leg to move through the field and touch third in 2:07.41.

The final heat saw Kate Douglass set the tone early, establishing the lead in the fly leg. She extended her lead through the breaststroke leg, before seeming to shut it down and just cruise on the freestyle. She easily posted the top time of the morning with a 2:04.39. World Aquatics’ results denote it as a championship record, but Katinka Hosszu was faster in Doha, when she set the world record at 2:01.86.

In 2021, Douglass also posted the fastest prelims time, a 2:04.24 which stands as her best. She added some time in finals, swimming 2:04.68 to earn bronze.

Qualifying third overall was Marrit Steenbergen, who broke the Dutch National Record in 2:06.01, downing Femke Heemskerk‘s mark of 2:06.69 from 2014.

Men’s 200 IM – Prelims

  • World Record: 1:49.63 – Ryan Lochte, USA (2012)
  • World Junior Record: 1:51.45 – Matthew Sates, RSA (2021)
  • Championship Record: 1:49.63 – Ryan Lochte, USA (2012)
  • 2021 Champion: 1:51.15 – Daiya Seto, JPN

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Daiya Seto (JPN) – 1:51.76
  2. Carson Foster (USA) – 1:51.89
  3. Finlay Knox (CAN) – 1:52.50
  4. Shaine Casas (USA)/Matthew Sates (RSA) – 1:52.52
  5. Clyde Lewis (AUS) – 1:52.83
  6. Alberto Razzetti (ITA) – 1:52.98
  7. Ogata So (JPN) – 1:53.00

It was an absolute battle between four swimmers in heat 3 of the men’s 200 IM–Alberto Razzetti, Ogata So, Andreas Vazaios, and Carles Coll MartiRazzetti, the 2021 bronze medalist, timed his move right and earned the win in 1:52.98.

The next heat saw a great race, where Daiya Seto grabbed the lead from Leonardo Coelho Santos on the breaststroke leg and never looked back, winning the heat in 1:51.76. On the freestyle leg, world junior record holder Matthew Sates passed Coehlo Santos as well to touch second in the heat. Tom Dean charged on the freestyle leg, but ran out of room–he finished fourth in the heat and missed out on the final.

In the final heat, Shaine Casas took the fly out fast, but Carson Foster took over on the backstroke leg. He pressed his lead during the breaststroke, and touched first in 1:51.89, just off the time that Seto set one heat prior. Finlay Knox put together a great back half and out-touched Casas for second by .02, not far off his own Canadian record.

Women’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay – Prelims

  • World Record: 3:26.53 – Netherlands (2014)
  • World Junior Record: 3:32.63 – Benchmark
  • Championship Record: 3:26.53 – Netherlands (2014)
  • 2021 Champion: 3:28.52 – Canada/United States

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Australia – 3:28.58
  2. Netherlands – 3:30.42
  3. Canada – 3:30.69
  4. United States – 3:31.11
  5. China – 3:32.05
  6. Sweden – 3:33.17
  7. Great Britain – 3:33.46
  8. Japan – 3:33.64

The Australian women were in full control during this prelims swim, and look set to take on the world record in finals. They opted not to use Mollie O’Callaghan for the prelims swim, so they have the option to bring her onto the relay as well, which no doubt will get them closer to that 3:26.53 mark that the Netherlands set in 2014. In her debut at these World Championships, their sprinting ace Emma McKeon anchored in 51.76, the second fastest split on the relay after Madi Wilson‘s 51.43. Expect McKeon to have saved up something for the final.

Marrit Steenbergen was a hero on the Dutch relays at European championships, and she put that on display here, splitting 51.72 to secure second seed for the finals. She swam past a cruising Torri Huske, who anchored the United States in 52.74. She should be faster tonight, and the Americans will likely load up with Claire Curzan as well.

The Canadian women had a strong swim to qualify third, especially considering that they’ve brought a smaller squad to these championships. Taylor Ruck anchored in an intriguing 51.91, and they can bring Maggie MacNeil onto the relay if they want. Rebecca Smith led them off in 52.75, with Katerine Savard (52.90) and Mary-Sophie Harvey (53.13) holding down the middle 200.

Men’s 4×100 Freestyle Relay – Prelims

  • World Record: 3:03.03 – United States (2018)
  • World Junior Record: 3:12.56 – Benchmark
  • Championship Record: 3:03.03 – United States (2018)
  • 2021 Champion: 3:03.45 – Russian Swimming Federation

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Italy – 3:04.46
  2. Brazil – 3:06.82
  3. United States – 3:06.83
  4. Australia – 3:07.02
  5. Spain – 3:07.75
  6. Netherlands – 3:08.58
  7. Canada – 3:08.80
  8. Japan – 3:09.25

Italy left no doubt that they’re the favorites heading into the final, posting the top time of the session by over two seconds. Alessandro Miressi led off in 46.08, and he was followed by Leonardo Deplano (46.19), Manuel Frigo (46.51), and Paolo Conte Bonin (45.68). They still have some changes they could make for the final if they wish, like bringing on Lorenzo Zazzeri and potentially Thomas Ceccon, though he didn’t look great in the 50 fly as he missed the semifinals.

The Americans rebounded from a rough 48.07 lead-off from David Curtiss to grab second in their heat, only .01 behind Brazil. Expect that relay to get faster tonight too, as they’ll no doubt swap someone in for Curtiss and likely Trenton Julian.

Australia took a bit of a risk by not having Kyle Chalmers on the prelims relay, but they qualified through safely in fourth. Without Chalmers, they went with Thomas Neill (47.00), Flynn Southam (46.55), Shaun Champion (47.49), and Matthew Temple (45.98).

Spain electrified the first heat of relays, leading the race through the first 300 meters. The squad of Sergio de Celis (46.71), Luis Dominguez (46.37), Mario Molla (46.69), and Carles Coll Marti (47.98) crushed their national record with a combined time of 3:07.75.

New Zealand set a new National Record in 3:10.97, placing ninth.

Women’s 50 Butterfly Swim Off

*Swim-off is for 17th place, 1st alternate

  1. Jenjira Srisaard – 25.78
  2. Neza Klancar – 25.85
  3. Angelina Kohler – 26.06

In case there’s a scratch for semifinals, there was a three-way swim-off for 17th place in the women’s 50 butterfly. Thailand’s Jenjira Srisaard swam 25.78, earning her first alternate, just a tenth ahead of Neza Klancar. Srisaard’s time is faster than the 25.85 she swam in prelims and a new lifetime best.

Men’s 50 Butterfly Swim Off

*Swim-off is for 16th place

  1. Florent Manaudou (FRA) – 22.31
  2. Nyls Korstanje (NED) 22.35

In the second swim-off of the session, Florent Manaudou and Nyls Korstanje faced off for the last lane in the men’s 50 butterfly semifinals. The Frenchman put his long reach to good use, edging out Korstanje by just four hundredths of a second to take the win, 22.31 to 22.35.

Both swam faster than they did in prelims. Manaudou’s time would have moved him through in a tie for seventh with Chad Le Clos. Korstanje’s 22.35 would have made him 11th seed.

Men’s 1500m Freestyle – Slowest Heats, Timed Finals

  • World Record: 14:06.88 – Florian Wellbrock, GER (2021)
  • World Junior Record: 14:27.78 – Gregorio Paltrinieri, ITA (2012)
  • Championship Record: 14:06.88 – Florian Wellbrock, GER (2021)
  • 2021 Champion: 14:06.88 – Florian Wellbrock, GER (2021)

Great Britain’s Daniel Jervis posted the fastest time in the prelims heats of the men’s 1500 freestyle. The 27-year-old swam 14:30.47, a lifetime best by about two seconds. He was over three seconds ahead of the next fastest swimmer, American Charlie Clark, who clocked 14:33.93.

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Coach Nico
1 year ago

Both Noè and Thierry broke the Swiss Record in their respective events during the prelims sesion this morning in Melbourne. Great swims – hopp Schwiiz!

1 year ago

Weng Lam Cheam is from Macau, not Macedonia

1 year ago

MA in form for this meet?

1 year ago

What time does finals start ? In PST but also in Melbourne?

1 year ago

The American coaches are lucky that they have so much leeway with relays at short course worlds. Ton of guys on the team that would have been a better choice to lead off than a guy who hasn’t been under 50 in LC. Casas, Murphy, Armstrong, and Carson would all be much quicker. MA would probably even outdo that time.

Reply to  oxyswim
1 year ago

I don’t think it’s luck as much as it was a calculated decision. The other guys all have much more robust event lineups than Curtiss does. And while he’s definitely more of a 50 free guy, he’s been sub-43 in the 100 yard freestyle. It gave him a chance to get in another SCM race, and it got the job the done of making sure the US made it to finals.

Last edited 1 year ago by Robert Gibbs
1 year ago

Kira Toussaint outsplit every American in the 400 free relay 🤯

Think it’s safe to say her finger is recovered

1 year ago

if clark keeps closing as he is he’ll overtake Jervis but I think he will hold him off

1 year ago

MAGIC MAN MAKES HIMSELF VANISH INTO THIN AIR!!! Gone in prelims! What a cool trick!

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Bruh
1 year ago

There’s at least something funny about leaving the actual world record holder at home in favor of a guy who has been vocal about not liking short course swimming.

About Sophie Kaufman

Sophie Kaufman

Sophie grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, which means yes, she does root for the Bruins, but try not to hold that against her. At 9, she joined her local club team because her best friend convinced her it would be fun. Shoulder surgery ended her competitive swimming days long ago, …

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