It wasn’t obvious when Brazil surprised to win the 200 mixed medley relay, because she was swimming against mostly men, but at the time we referred to Etiene Medeiros’ leadoff backstroke split of 25.83 as the key leg in that win. In the process, she beat Emily Seebohm, Katinka Hosszu, and Daryna Zevina – an impressive trio of backstrokers.
The sentiment was validated on Sunday when she swam a 25.67 to not only win the women’s 50 backstroke, and to not only beat a studded field of stars, but to take down the World Record of 25.70 in the event. That old record was done at the 2009 European Championships by Croatia’s Sanja Jovanovic.
Medeiros is the only Brazilian woman to currently hold a FINA World Record.
Medeiros’ swim also broke her own South American Record of 24.61 done at Jose Finkel in September.
Note: generally speaking, FINA doesn’t recognize records of leadoff legs in mixed relays, given the different drafting dynamics, so Medeiros’ 25.83 from the mixed medley at this meet probably doesn’t count as the South American Record. FINA doesn’t officially track continental records, however, so there’s no rule that we know of either that explicitly says her 25.83 wouldn’t count. That one’s in the eye of the beholder.