2024 World Championships: Day 1 Prelims Live Recap

2024 WORLD AQUATIC CHAMPIONSHIPS

Day One Prelims Start Lists

Day One Prelims Relay Article

The swimming portion of Doha 2024 commences in less than an hour, and today’s prelim session will feature a total of 8 events, 6 of them being individual ones. Action will kick off with the women’s 200 IM, followed by the men’s 400 free, women’s 100 fly, men’s 50 fly, women’s 400 free, and men’s 100 breast. The session will conclude with the 4×100 freestyle relay for both men and women.

The first event of the morning, the women’s 200 IM, will feature defending World Champion Kate Douglass. She won the world title in Fukuoka with a swift 2:07.17 effort, and owns a best time of 2:07.09 in the event. Douglass owns a season best time of 2:07.89, which she recorded at the Knoxville Pro Swim Series during a morning time trial. China’s Yu Yiting is another name to watch for in the event, as the defending bronze medalist posted a best time of 2:07.75 in September.

The men’s 400 free will be one of the most loaded fields of the entire meet, with defending silver medalist (and 2023 800 & 1500 World Champion) Ahmed Hafnaoui entered as the top seed. The 2022 World Champion, Elijah Winnington, will also feature in the field after a 7th place performance in Fukuoka. Winnington was 3:44.26 in last year’s final, but his best time from 2022 (3:41.22) puts him in the conversation for gold. Lukas Märtens of Germany is another name slated to compete in this stacked field, having earned silver at 2022 Worlds (3:42.85) and bronze (3:42.20) last year. He owns a best time of 3:41.60 in the event.

The women’s 100 and men’s 50 butterfly events will occur next, highlighted by top seeds Claire Curzan (USA) and Diogo Ribeiro (POR). The 100 fly is the event where Curzan broke onto the scene as a junior athlete, ultimately qualifying for the U.S. Olympic team for the event in 2021. She still holds the world junior record in the event from prior to the Tokyo Olympics (56.43, with an unratified 56.20), and it still stands as her best time. Ribeiro is the world junior record holder in the 50 fly, and won silver in this event last year in Fukuoka.

The women’s 400 free is missing many of the top contenders, including world record holder Ariarne Titmus, world junior record holder Summer McIntosh, and American superstar Katie Ledecky. However, Erika Fairweather of New Zealand, who scored bronze in her first ever sub-4:00 performance in Fukuoka, is entered and in a great position to fight for gold. Chinese freestyle ace, Li Bingjie, will also be in the hunt with her 4:01.08 best time.

The men’s 100 breast is another deep field, with 2023 medalists Arno Kamminga and Nicolo Martinenghi featuring in today’s heats. Additionally, world record holder Adam Peaty made the trip to Doha, and will be one to look out for after skipping the previous two World Championships. Caspar Corbeau of the Netherlands is another name to watch for, recently making the move from Eddie Reese and Texas to train under Mark Faber. Faber also trains Kamminga and Tes Schouten, both swimmers who have seen significant success in breaststroke over the past three years.

One important thing to note is the absence of the men’s 400 IM in today’s session. For the last two World Championships (2022 & 2023), it featured on the first day of the competition. Here in Doha, it will return to its usual spot on the final day.

WOMEN’S 200 INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY – HEATS

  • World Record: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary – 2:06.12 (2015)
  • World Junior Record: Summer McIntosh, Canada – 2:06.89 (2023)
  • Championship Record: Katinka Hosszu, Hungary – 2:06.12 (2015)
  • 2023 World Champion: Kate Douglass, USA – 2:07.17

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Kate Douglass (USA) – 2:10.01
  2. Sydney Pickrem (CAN) – 2:10.97
  3. Marrit Steenbergen (NED) – 2:11.45
  4. Yu Yiting (CHN) – 2:11.53
  5. Abbie Wood (GBR) – 2:11.57
  6. Charlotte Bonnet (FRA) – 2:12.32
  7. Ashley McMillan (CAN) – 2:12.65
  8. Anastasia Gorbenko (ISR) – 2:12.76
  9. Sara Franceschi (ITA) – 2:13.66
  10. Kim Seoyeong (KOR) – 2:13.85
  11. Lena Kreundl (AUT) – 2:14.03
  12. Kristen Romano (PUR) – 2:14.24
  13. Letitia Sim (SGP) – 2:14.26
  14. Dalma Sebestyen (HUN) – 2:14.27
  15. Cyrielle Duhamel (FRA) – 2:15.24
  16. Tamara Potocka (SVK) – 2:15.69

Marrit Steenbergen of the Netherlands, Yu Yiting, and Abbie Wood got things going in the first heat. They touched just over a tenth apart at the end of the heat, with Steenbergen (2:11.45) grabbing the win. Yu touched in 2:11.53 and Wood finished with a time of 2:11.57.

Canada’s Sydney Pickrem looked very relaxed in heat two, grabbing the win in 2:10.97. Charlotte Bonnet (2:12.32) of France and Canadian teammate Ashley McMillan (2:12.65) touched 2nd and 3rd in this heat. Pickrem had a strong breaststroke split of 37.29, which bodes well for her 200 breast later in the meet. Her best time in that event puts her in the medal conversation there, too.

Kate Douglass of the United States looked strong in the final heat, ripping through the first 50 in 27.22. The field caught her on the backstroke leg, but she regained control of the heat during breaststroke. She turned through the 150 with a 1.81 second lead, and held it through to the finish. She seemed to really shut it down on the freestyle leg, ultimately finishing in a time of 2:10.01, the fastest time of the morning.

Kim Seoyeong (10th) of Korea and Anastasia Gorbenko (8th) of Israel also safely qualified for the semifinals later today. Kim owns a best time of 2:08.34 and Gorbenko has been as swift as 2:09.28, and both should safely advance to the final if they can get near those times.

It took a time of 2:15.69 to make tonight’s semifinals, compared to the 2:12.83 required in Fukuoka last year.

MEN’S 400 FREESTYLE – HEATS

  • World Record: Paul Biedermann, Germany – 3:40.07 (2009)
  • World Junior Record: Petar Mitsin, Bulgaria – 3:44.31 (2023)
  • Championship Record: Paul Biedermann, Germany – 3:40.07 (2009)
  • 2023 World Champion: Sam Short, Australia – 3:40.68

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Elijah Winnington (AUS) – 3:44.37
  2. Lukas Märtens (GER) – 3:44.77
  3. Kim Woomin (KOR) – 3:45.14
  4. Daniel Wiffen (IRL) – 3:45.52
  5. Felix Auboeck (AUT) – 3:45.53
  6. Guilherme Costa (BRA) – 3:46.03
  7. Lucas Henveaux (BEL) – 3:46.15
  8. Victor Johansson (SWE) – 3:46.20

Heat four saw Sweden’s Victor Johansson take down the Swedish national record from 1992. He touched in 3:46.20 to eclipse Anders Holmertz’s mark from the Barcelona Olympics. France’s David Aubry touched just behind with a time of 3:46.40, two very swift marks in an un-circle seeded heat. Johansson’s previous best time is listed at 3:47.33, which he recorded at the Malmsten Swim Open in 2018. His time would hold up to qualify in 8th place, with Aubry just missing out in 9th.

The first circle seeded heat featured a two-time Worlds medalist in this event, Germany’s Lukas Märtens. He took the race out strong through the first 200, flipping with the lead in 1:51.54. He maintained the lead through the 200, leading 2022 bronze medalist Guilherme Costa of Brazil by 1.2 seconds. Martens ultimately grabbed the heat win in 3:44.77, holding off a strong charge from Austria’s Felix Auboeck (3:45.53) over the final 50. Costa (3:46.03) took 3rd in the heat, finishing in

The final heat saw Kim Woomin of Korea take the lead through the 250m turn, before 2022 World Champ Elijah Winnington took over. Winnington ultimately took the heat win with the fastest time of the morning, stopping the clock in 3:44.37. Kim held on for 2nd in the heat (3:45.14), with Ireland’s Daniel Wiffen (3:45.52) sprinting home for 3rd.

Belgium’s Lucas Henveaux hit the wall in 3:46.15, taking 4th in heat five. His time breaks his own national record from last April, and qualifies him 7th for the final.

Of note, world junior record holder Petar Mitsin of Bulgaria missed the final. He finished 9th in heat five with a time of 3:49.43. He took 23rd overall.

In a shocker, Tunisia’s Ahmed Hafnaoui, who claimed silver in Fukuoka with a sizzling 3:40.70, missed the final in 17th place. His time this morning was 3:48.05.

American David Johnston finished in a time of 3:46.99, taking 12th.

WOMEN’S 100 BUTTERFLY – HEATS

  • World Record: Sarah Sjostrom, Sweden – 55.48 (2016)
  • World Junior Record: Claire Curzan, USA – 56.43 (2021)
  • Championship Record: Sarah Sjostrom, Sweden – 55.53 (2017)
  • 2023 World Champion: Zhang Yufei, China – 56.12

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Angelina Köhler (GER) – 56.41
  2. Louise Hansson (SWE) – 57.45
  3. Erin Gallagher (RSA) – 57.59
  4. Brianna Throssell (AUS) – 57.78
  5. Claire Curzan (USA) – 57.94
  6. Alexandria Perkins (AUS) – 58.10
  7. Chiharu Iitsuka (JPN) – 58.35
  8. Barbora Seemanova (CZE) – 58.37
  9. Helena Rosendahl Bach (DEN) – 58.67
  10. Anna Ntountounaki (GRE) – 58.72
  11. Nagisa Ikemoto (JPN) – 58.73
  12. Anastasiya Kuliashova (NIA) – 58.94
  13. Farida Osman (EGY) – 59.11
  14. Amina Kajtaz (CRO) – 59.14
  15. Katerine Savard (CAN) – 59.24
  16. Jungwon Park (KOR) – 59.32

The first circle seeded heat saw a massive swim from Angelina Köhler of Germany. She stopped the clock in a rapid 56.41, her first time under the 57-second barrier. Her previous best time (and national record) stood at the 57.05 she produced in 2023.

Sweden’s Louise Hansson claimed victory in the penultimate heat, touching in stopping the clock in 57.45. Australia’s Brianna Throssell hit the wall first in the final heat, winning in 57.78. American Claire Curzan led most of the way, but was overtaken with 15m to go.

If Kohler can replicate her 56.41 in the next two rounds, she seems like a very likely gold medal favorite. Only American Claire Curzan (56.20) (of the entrants here in Doha) has ever been faster than the time Kohler produced this morning.

MEN’S 50 BUTTERFLY – HEATS

  • World Record: Andrii Govorov, Ukraine – 22.27 (2018)
  • World Junior Record: Diogo Ribeiro, Portugal – 22.96 (2022)
  • Championship Record: Caeleb Dressel, USA – 22.35 (2019)
  • 2023 World Champion: Thomas Ceccon, Italy – 22.68

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Nyls Korstanje (NED) – 23.02
  2. Michael Andrew (USA) – 23.03
  3. Isaac Cooper (AUS) – 23.15
  4. Dylan Carter (TTO) – 23.16
  5. Diogo Matos Ribeiro (POR) – 23.18 & Nicholas Lia (NOR) – 23.18
  6. -v
  7. Cameron McEvoy (AUS) – 23.19
  8. Inchul Baek (KOR) – 23.34
  9. Szebasztian Szabo (HUN) – 23.35
  10. Shaine Casas (USA) – 23.37 & Mario Molla Yanes (ESP) – 23.37
  11. Nikola Miljenic (CRO) – 23.41
  12. Chad Le Clos (RSA) – 23.47
  13. Daniel Gracik (CZE) – 23.51
  14. Finlay Knox (CAN) – 23.53
  15. Swim-off Required: Simon Bucher (AUT), Tzen Wei Teong (SGP), and Stergios Marios Bilas (GRE) tied at 23.53

Nyls Korstanje of the Netherlands heads into tonight’s semifinals with the top qualifying time. He stopped the clock in 23.02 this morning, just 0.01 ahead of American Michael Andrew (23.03).

Australian Isaac Cooper dropped a best time of 23.15 to qualify 3rd overall, while Dylan Carter finished 0.01 behind (23.16) to advance in 4th.2 023 50 free World Champ, Aussie Cameron McEvoy, touched in 23.19 this morning to qualify in 7th place. McEvoy has been as swift as 23.07 in this sprint fly event.

American Shaine Casas tied for 10th this morning, stopping the clock in a near best time of 23.37. Casas has been as fast as 23.31 in the event, which she split en route to his 100 fly best time (50.40) in 2022. 2012 200 fly Olympic Champion, South Africa’s Chad Le Clos, touched in 13th this morning. He finished with a time of 23.47.

The world junior record holder and Fukuoka silver medalist, Diogo Matos Ribeiro, finished with a time of 23.18. He will safely advance to the semifinals as well.

There was a three-way tie for 16th position, as Simon Bucher (AUT), Tzen Wei Teong (SGP), and Stergios Marios Bilas (GRE) all tied with a time of 23.53. A swim-off will be required at the end of the session.

WOMEN’S 400 FREESTYLE – HEATS

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Li Bingjie (CHN) – 4:04.65
  2. Erika Fairweather (NZL) – 4:04.70
  3. Isabel Gose (GER) – 4:05.48
  4. Maria Fernanda De Oliveria Da Silva Costa (BRA) – 4:05.52
  5. Eve Thomas (NZL) – 4:06.12
  6. Gabrielle Roncatto (BRA) – 4:06.13
  7. Peiqi Yang (CHN) – 4:06.82
  8. Agostina Hein (ARG) – 4:08.86

Erika Fairweather, the bronze medalist from Fukuoka, took control of the final heat from the very start. She flipped through the 200m mark in 2:00.80, and maintained the lead through the 350. China’s Li Bingjie made a late charge over the final 15 meters, securing the heat win with a time of 4:04.65. Fairweather touched for 2nd place, just 0.05 behind in 4:04.70.

Isabel Gose of Germany will also feature later today, qualifying 3rd in a respectable 4:05.48.

A pair of Brazilian athletes will also compete in tonight’s final, as Maria Fernanda De Oliveria Da Silva Costa (4:05.52) and Gabrielle Roncatto (4:06.13) qualified 4th and 6th, respectively.

Of note, Australian Kiah Melverton missed out on the final, placing 12th overall (4:10.61). She owns a best time in the 4:03-range, which would have put her in medal contention.

New Zealand’s Eve Thomas, who trains with Melverton in Australia under Dean Boxall, qualified 5th for the final in 4:06.12. The swim from Thomas was just 0.02 outside her best time from April.

MEN’S 100 BREASTSTROKE – HEATS

  • World Record: Adam Peaty, Great Britain – 56.88 (2019)
  • World Junior Record: Nicolo Martinenghi, Italy – 59.01 (2017)
  • Championship Record: Adam Peaty, Great Britain – 56.88 (2019)
  • 2023 World Champion: Qin Haiyang, China – 57.69

Top 16 Qualifiers:

  1. Nic Fink (USA) – 59.19
  2. Nicolo Martinenghi (ITA) – 59.27
  3. Adam Peaty (GBR) – 59.34
  4. Caspar Corbeau (NED) – 59.38
  5. Lucas Matzerath (GER) – 59.43
  6. Jake Foster (USA) – 59.61 & Arno Kamminga (NED) – 59.61
  7.  –
  8. Melvin Imoudu (GER) – 59.72
  9. Ilya Shymanovich (NIA) – 59.81 & Sam Williamson (AUS) – 59.81
  10. Andrius Sidlauskas (LTU) – 59.84
  11. Ludovico Blu Art Viberti (ITA) – 59.86
  12. Dong Zhihao (CHN) – 59.97
  13. Choi Dongyeol (KOR) – 1:00.15
  14. Berkay Ogretir (TUR) – 1:00.27
  15. Denis Petrashov (KGZ) – 1:00.47

Nicolo Martinenghi of Italy stole the show in the first circle seeded heat, securing the win in 59.27. Caspar Corbeau (59.38) of the Netherlands finished just behind him, recording a time of. American Jake Foster finished 3rd in this heat, posting a new best time of 59.61.

Corbeau’s teammate, Arno Kamminga, made his presence known in the penultimate heat. He took the race out in 27.81, and maintained his lead through to the finish. He touched in 59.61 to win the heat, with Melvin Imoudu (59.72) of Germany taking 2nd and Aussie Sam Williamson (59.81) snagging 3rd. Williamson had a breakthrough in this event a few months back at the Japan Open, where he posted a time of 59.26.

World record holder Adam Peaty led the final heat through the first 90 meters, but American Nic Fink finished strong to take the win. Fink’s time of 59.19 is the fastest time of the morning, while Peaty’s time of 59.34 ranks 3rd overall.

As has become commonplace over the past year, significant delays occurred between each heat for video review.

WOMEN’S 4×100 FREESTYLE RELAY – HEATS

  • World Record: Australia – 3:27.96 (2023)
  • Championship Record: Australia – 3:27.96 (2023)
  • 2023 World Champion: Australia – 3:27.96

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Australia – 3:38.33
  2. Italy – 3:39.20
  3. Canada – 3:39.75
  4. Netherlands – 3:40.42
  5. Poland – 3:41.43
  6. Brazil – 3:41.43
  7. China – 3:41.75
  8. Slovenia – 3:42.11

Australia, the defending champions in this event, qualified 1st for tonight’s final. The foursome of Alexandria Perkins (55.06), Jaclyn Barclay (55.51), Abbey Harkin (54.93), and Shayna Jack (52.83) hit the wall in 3:38.33, about a full second ahead of the next closest team. Look for Brianna Throssell to be substituted in for the final tonight.

Italy touched in 3:39.20 for the 2nd qualifying spot, with a swift 53.88 from anchor Chiara Tarantino.

Canada posted a sub-3:40 effort (3:39.75), with Taylor Ruck posting the fastest split in 54.08.

The Netherlands clocked 3:40.42 to qualify 4th, and still have Marrit Steenbergen to add to the quartet tonight.

Poland, Brazil, China, and Slovenia will join the top four qualifiers tonight, too.

MEN’S 4×100 FREESTYLE RELAY – HEATS

  • World Record: USA – 3:08.24
  • Championship Record: USA – 3:09.06
  • 2023 World Champion: Australia – 3:10.16

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. United States – 3:12.32
  2. Italy – 3:12.96
  3. Great Britain – 3:13.96
  4. China – 3:14.07
  5. Greece – 3:14.33
  6. Serbia – 3:14.42
  7. Spain – 3:14.71
  8. Hungary – 3:14.73

The United States took the top qualifying spot in the 4×100 free relay, with a pair of Texas-trained athletes highlighting the relay. Swimming the final two legs, Luke Hobson (47.70) and Carson Foster (47.83) threw down a pair of sub-48 second splits in an event they don’t swim very often. Hunter Armstrong led off in 48.37, just off his 2022 best time of 48.25. Jack Aikins split 48.42 on the 2nd leg, but Matt King is expected to feature in tonight’s final.

Team GB qualified 3rd overall, but looked completely out of the race at the halfway mark. Jacob Whittle led off in 48.82, Tom Dean split 49.13 on the second leg, Duncan Scott posted a 48.25 on the third leg, and Matthew Richards anchored in 47.76. With that swim, they earn the opportunity to swim at the Paris Olympics after their disqualification in Fukuoka.

Italy advances 2nd, with their prelims squad consisting of Lorenzo Zazzeri (48.33), Paolo Conte Bonin (48.16), Leonardo Deplano (48.59), and Alessandro Miressi (47.88).

China, Greece, Serbia, Spain, and Hungary also qualified for the final. The 2023 world leader in the 100 free, Pan Zhanle, anchored China in 48.26 this morning.

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Looking For: Canadian Breaststroker (M/F)
18 days ago

Knox with the 47.9 👀

Beginner Swimmer at 25
18 days ago

damn I was hella wrong putting Hafnaoui at 1

I miss the ISL
18 days ago

Still have confidence in Claire Curzan. I rewatched her prelims swim and she looked like she shut it down. Plus she was super long on the turn and finish. She’s got a 56 in her for sure.

snailSpace
Reply to  I miss the ISL
18 days ago

She really didn’t need to be fast, the field isn’t that competitive. I think a medal is almost a given.
Köhler in the other hand looked dangerous, so gold might not be easy to claim.

Swimz
Reply to  I miss the ISL
18 days ago

Yeses.. both curzan and Douglas looked so easy

oxyswim
18 days ago

I said at the time at Hafnaoui leaving IU was a huge risk given how well last year went. That doesn’t make me feel better about it.

Dan
18 days ago

I think that Louise Hansson has ben 56.22 in the 100 Fly which would also be faster than what Kohler did today, that time was done at the Tokyo Olympics

swimster
18 days ago

oof to Schubert’s swimmers in the 400

Ron Henderson
Reply to  swimster
18 days ago

The 1970s called and asked to get their coach back. I bet Ray Looze is laughing his a** off.

Last edited 18 days ago by Ron Henderson
postgrad swimmer
Reply to  swimster
18 days ago

Okay relax, this Mickey Mouse world championship doesn’t mean anything

Ron Henderson
Reply to  postgrad swimmer
17 days ago

Do you think it was part of his plan to travel all the way to Doha to swim a 3:48?

Rafael
18 days ago

Note
Mafe swam the 400 then went for the 4×100

FST
18 days ago

Looks like Tzen Wei Teong won that swim off…