Natsumi Hoshi is a Japanese butterfly specialist and multi-time Olympian. Born August 20, 1990 Hoshi has been around the international swimming scene for a long time, but had a big breakthrough in 2015 when she won her first gold medal of a World Championships competition. Aside from the pool Hoshi studied medicine at Waseda University in Tokyo, and she enjoys shopping.
2008 Beijing Olympics
Hoshi qualified for the 2008 Beijing Olympics at just 17 years old in her specialty event, the 200-meter butterfly. In the preliminary heats Hoshi finished 3rd in her heat, and 6th overall, effectively moving forward to the semi-finals. In heat one of the semi-finals, Hoshi finished in 6th place after adding nearly a second to her prelims time. The swim wasn’t enough though to advance her to the finals, and she finished just two spots out at 10th overall.
2012 London Olympics
At the Japanese Olympic Trials Hoshi emerged as a major frontrunner in the 200 fly. After just 50 meters in the race, Hoshi had already built a body length lead on her competition. She went on to crush the National Record by over a second, splitting the race as perfect as possible. At the time her mark also ranked her at 1st in the world.
In London Hoshi qualified for the finals of the 200-meter butterfly after setting a solid time in the preliminaries. To finish out a huge breakout year, Hoshi finished in 3rd place to win her first Olympic medal.
2015 World Championships
At the 2015 World Championships in Kazan Hoshi came to compete in her signature butterfly race. After advancing to semi-finals and later the finals, Hoshi was in a stacked heat of strong global butterfly strength. USA’s Katie McLaughlin and Germany’s Franziska Hentke led the first 150 meters, and Hoshi sat in 3rd and 4th place for the majority of the race. Since Hoshi consistently has phenomenal pacing in the 200 fly, it wasn’t much of a surprise when she turned on the jets on her last 50 meters to touch the wall first and win not only her first World Championship gold medal, but her it was also her first World Championships medal win. Her time, 2:05.56, was enough to put her at 3rd in the world, but didn’t match her best time of 2:04.69 she set back in 2012 at the Japanese Trials.
2016 Rio Olympics
Hoshi swam a 2:05.20 in the 200M Butterfly to win the bronze medal behind the top two finishers, Mireia Belmonte Garcia of Spain and Madeline Groves of Australia.