2022 World Junior Championships: Day 1 Finals Preview/Scratch Report


Day 1 Finals Schedule:

  • Boys 400 Free – FINAL
  • Girls 50 Breast – SEMIFINALS
  • Boys 100 Back – SEMIFINALS
  • Girls 400 IM – FINALS
  • Boys 100 Breast – SEMIFINALS
  • Girls 100 Back – SEMIFINALS
  • Boys 4×100 Free Relay – FINAL
  • Girls 4×200 Free Relay – FINAL

Scratch Report:

There are no scratches to report for tonight’s finals session.

Session Preview:

Tonight’s finals session will be heavy on semifinals since it’s the first night of the meet. That being said, we’ll still have finals of the boys 400 free, girls 400 IM, and the boys 4×100 free and girls 4×200 free relays. Starting with the 400 free, Brazil’s Stephan Steverink had a good swim this morning, speeding to the top seed for finals with a 3:50.24. While Steverink looked strong this morning, this is a tight field, seeing both Turkey’s Batuhan Filiz and Romania’s Vlad Stefan Stancu swimming 3:51s this morning. Spain’s Carlos Garach Benito, Poland’s Krzysztof Chmielewski, and Italians Filippo Bertoni and Alessandro Ragaini all swimming 3:52s.

The girls 400 IM saw Japan’s Mio Narita cruise to the top time of the morning with a 4:45.29. Notably, that time comes in nearly 9 seconds off her personal best and 9 seconds off the time she swam to win gold at the Jr Pan Pacific Championships in Hawaii just days ago. Given the seed times and what we saw this morning, Narita should win this race handily tonight, and stands a great chance of taking down the World Junior Championship Record of 4:38.53 as well.

Of course, all eyes will be on Romanian 17-year-old David Popovici in the boys 4×100 free relay final tonight. After breaking the World Record in the 100 free (46.86) at the European Championships a few weeks ago, Popovici dove in for a speedy 47.37 leading the Romanian relay off this morning, That swim comes in just 0.51 seconds off his WR and broke the WJ Championship Record in the boys 100 free. Assuming Romania leads Popovici off again tonight, they’ll be out to another massive lead, which could boost them to a gold medal. Romanian anchor Patrick Sebastian Dinu had a great swim this morning as well, bringing the relay home in 49.47.

Though it’s just a semifinal tonight, the boys 100 backstroke will be of interest as well. After a stunning 52.58 at the World Championships in June, Polish 17-year-old Ksawery Masiuk clocked a 53.76 to lead prelims this morning. South African 18-year-old Pieter Coetze was 53.93, chipping 0.03 seconds off his personal best in the event. Masiuk and Coetze were leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of the field this morning, touching as the only swimmers under 56 seconds in prelims.

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