During today’s final session of the 2011 Jose Finkel Trophy in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, we saw only the 2nd Meet Record of the week, and it was one earned on the continued impressiveness of the Argentine distance group.
Cecilia Biagioli, who is from the neighboring Argentina but is competing in this meet for Corinthians, took a big win in 16:46.68 in the women’s 1,500m. That broke by 10 seconds the old record, set in 2007 by Poliana Okimoto, who is a native Brazilian. Okimoto, who is an open water specialist that became the first Brazilian swimmer to officially qualify for the Olympics in the 10k marathon, picked up 2nd place points while watching her record disappear in 17:00.56.
Juan Pereyra’s victory in the men’s 800 gave Argentina a clean-sweep of the distance events. His winning time was 8:05.75. Brazil’s men’s distance group was a bit shorthanded, with UNISANTA’s Luiz Arapiraca sitting the meet out. Brazil does have some young talent though, who with some good coaching could improve the nation’s depth in the event beyond Arapiraca with proper coaching. Amongst that group is 21-year old Lucas Kanieski, who took 2nd in 8:09.58.
The women’s 1,500 may have been the only Meet Record of the meet, but I wouldn’t call it the best swim of the night. That honor goes to the men of the 50 meter fly, which was a very quick race. Cesar Cielo, the World Champion in the event, took a 23.48 victory in the race for Flamengo, which was no surprise. The silver medal went to Glauber Silva in 23.65, which moves him up to 17th in the world. With Cielo and Nicholas dos Santos (who was 3rd here in 23.20) still ranked 1st and 2nd in this race, no other country in the world has three swimmers ranked as highly as the Brazilians. The Pan Am Games events mirror those of the Olympics, so the Brazilians are done with all of the 50 strokes for the season.
In the women’s 50 fly, the Netherlands’ Inge Dekker capped off the meet with her 2nd victory in 26.56. She is currently ranked 2nd in the world in the event. The top Brazilian was Daynara de Paula in 2nd in 27.01.
In the men’s 100 backstroke, Gabriel Mangabeira won his 2nd event of the meet, after the 100 fly, in 55.48. Guilherme Guido, the country’s best backstroker, finished all the way back in 6th in 56.52.
In the women’s 100 backstroke, Fabiola Molina cooled down a touch after two career-best swims in the meet, but still had a solid 1:01.33 for the victory for Minas. That win sealed up the high-point of the meet award for Molina, who scored 141 individual points on four individual victories. Thiago Pereira took the men’s award thanks to three wins and a runner-up for 135 points.
This meet was over pretty early in terms of a team battle, with Minas taking the victory by almost 700 points. They had by far the most medals (44) and 89 total finalists. That included a meet-leading 12 event victories. Pinheiros took 2nd in the team scoring by a comfortable margin, and though Flamengo won 11 events to their 10, the depth of Pinheiros blew Flamengo away. The top four teams accounted for 41 of the 42 event wins, with the lone exception being a single victory by Fluminese.
1. Minas 2493.5
2. Pinheiros 1799
3. Glamengo 1478
4. Corinthians 1367
5. UNISANTA 743.5