On the final day of the 2012 European Short Course Swimming Championships Russia’s Vladimir Morozov continued his winning ways.
Women’s 400 IM
The top three women from the 200 IM back end up back on the podium in the 400 IM, but in a different order. This time Great Britain’s Hannah Miley finished on top winning the event with Hungarian Katinka Hosszu touching in second and fellow Hungarian Zsuzsanna Jakabos finishing third.
This was an exciting race from start to finish. Jakabos lead the way through the butterfly and backstroke, in the breaststroke Miley took the lead with Hosszu over taking her teammate Jakabos, going into the last 100 meters just over a second behind Miley. Hosszu continued to gain on Miley but did not have enough to catch the Brit who finished in an European and Championship Record time of 4:23.47.
“Im shocked that I was that fast! Last year I had a 4:26, and I wanted to clock the same time or a little bit faster, and now I’ve got a new European record: This was a great event for me, but also really tough. I’m happy that it’s over.”
Hosszu finished second in a time of 4:23.91 also under the previous European Record of 4:24.21 set by Mireia Belmonte Garcia in 2010 and the Championship Record of 4:24.55 which was also set by Garcia in 2011.
Jakabos finished third in a time of 4:25.61.
“I improved my best time by more than two seconds, so I’m happy with the bronze medal. The two other girls were out of reach.”
Men’s 200 Breaststroke
Vyacheslav Sinkevich of Russian won the men’s 200 breaststroke posting the second fastest time in the world this year of 2:04.55. After the race, even though it was the biggest win of his career Sinkevich expressed some frustration, “I don’t understand the reason, but in this pool I have difficulties to get a good feeling in the water. Therefore it was a difficult race for me. Nevertheless, it’s the greatest success of my career.”
Igor Broysik of the Ukraine finished second in a time of 2:05.12 just narrowly ahead of his Ukrainian teammate Andriy Kovalenko who finished third in a time of 2:05.21.
Broysik is one of many swimmers who has recently changed his coach and found success, “One month ago I changed my coach, and now it’s going well for me again. The cheers of the audience told me that the Frenchman was good, but I didn’t see him.
Women’s 200 Freestyle
After Camille Muffat went 1:51.65 at the French National Championships flirting with Federica Pellegrini’s World Record of 1:51.17 there has been great anticipation to see if she could break that mark at the European Championships.
After Muffat broke the 400 freestyle earlier in the meet that anticipation grew
Although Muffat won the event she had trouble bettering her time from a week ago finishing in a 1:52.20.
“The obvious goal for me was to win this race – whatever the time. My problem was the time span between the French nationals last week and this weekend, because today it’s my eighth competition day with just three rest days inbetween. That’s a bit too short.”
Charlotte Bonnel of France finished second in a time of 1:54.00. Although well behind her teammate Muffat the time was over a second faster than what Bonnel went at French Nationals, “I’m satisfied because I confirmed my time of this morning’s heats. I improved my best time this morning and again this afternoon.”
Finishing just behind Bonnel in third was Veronika Popova of Russia in a time of 1:54.20.
“It was a good race for me, and a personal best as well. I’m really happy about the bronze medal and will try to get another one in the 100m fly.”
Men’s 100 IM
In winning the men’s 100 IM Vladimir Morozov collected his sixth medal of the meet. Morozov posted the third fastest time in the world this year touching in a time of 51.89.
“Six medals and perhaps a seventh with the freestyle relay – I would never have dared to dream about that! However, I had decided to get close to Peter Mankoc’s World record, and thats why I’m a bit disappointed.”
Slovenia’s Peter Mankoc who holds the World Record with a time of 50.76 finished well behind Morozov
“That’s it now! This was my last race at a Short Course Europeans!”
Finishing in third was Martti Aljand in Estonian National Record time of 52.92. The previous record of 53.52 was set by Marin Liivamagi in 2009.
“I knew before the race that it will be hard to win the gold medal, because Vladimir and Peter are that strong. I just tried to hang on to them, and was rewarded with the bronze medal and a personal best.”
Women’s 100 Butterfly
Italian Ilaria Bianchi won the women’s 100 butterfly posting the fastest time in the world this year and breaking the Italian National Record in a time of 56.40, better her own mark of 57.42 set in 2011.
“I didn’t expect to win this race, because of the strong competition. My aim was to set a new Italian record, and that’s what I achieved. The gold medal is the icing on the cake.”
Kimberly Buy of Belgium finished second, also in a National Record time of 57.00 better her own mark of 57.48 set in 2009.
“It was a perfect race for me, I improved my personal best by half a second. I didn’t too well at the Olympics and hope that this is a good start for the upcoming season.”
Jeanette Ottesen Gray of Denmark finished third in a time of 57.13.
Men’s 200 Freestyle
After just missing Paul Biedermann’s World Record of 1:39.37 at the French Nationals everyone was waiting to see if Yannick Agnel this would be the day he would surpass the German.
It was not. After posting a time of 1:39.70 last week Agnel won the men’s 200 freestyle today in 1:41.46.
“I controlled my efforts throughout the entire Championships and despite a certain tiredness I won today – which was my aim.”
The race for second was a good won between Pieter Timmers of Belgium and Gregory Mallet of France. Mallot was ahead of Timmers who over took Mallet in the last 50 meters to finish second in a time of 1:43.08 a new Belgian National Record bettering his own mark of 1:44.89 set in 2011.
“It is difficult to swim alongside Agnel. It’s my first international medal, and it was a great day for Belgian swimming since Kimberly Buys won silver just before me.”
Mallet finished third in a time of 1:43.21.
“My double goal has been fulfilled – to gain a medal with a personal best!”
Women’s 100 Breaststroke
Denmark’s Rikke Moeller Pedersen completed her swims at the European Championships with an incredible win in the women’s 100 breaststroke in a time of 1:04.12 breaking her own European Record of 1:04.21 set in 2009 and the Championship Record of 1:04.49 she set in the semi finals.
“I had to settle down after the Olympics before restarting into the new season. I’m still in the build-up process with my new swimming technique, and to improve my own European record is simply fantastic.”
Speedster Petra Chocova of the Czech Republic went out only three tenths of a second behind Pedersen in a time of 30.75, but did not have a lot left in the last half of the race finishing second in a time of 1:05.50 breaking her own National Record of 1:06.80 set in 2009.
“This race was really tough, and I wanted to go as fast as I can. Rikke was too fast for me today, so I’m happy with silver.”
Chocova held off the fast charging Marina Urzainqui Garcia who finished third in a Spanish National Record time of 1:05.82 eclipsing the record of 1:06.12 set by Mireia Belmonte Garcia in 2009.
“Fantastic, that’s my second medal here, achieved a super time. It’s a perfect championships for me. I’m now looking forward what I can still do at the Worlds in Istanbul.”
Men’s 100 Backstroke
France took the two top spots in the men’s 100 backstroke. Jeremy Stravius who won the French National Championships in a time of 51.18 finished first in a time of 49.70 breaking the French National Record of 49.80 set by Camille Lacourt in 2010.
“Several people in the French team thought I was capable of swimming below 50 seconds, but I didn’t. So I have to admit that I’m positively surprised by my time.”
Benjamin Stasiulis finished second in a time of 50.31,
“I did the second best time in the semi-final but wasn’t stressed at all before this final. My confidence allowed me to improve my personal best and win silver.”
Italian Damiano Lestingi finished well behind the Frenchmen in a time of 51.35.
“Since I didn’t compete at an international championship for two years, I’m feeling on cloud nine with bronze. The two Frenchmen were not to beat, I did my very best.”
Women’s 200 Backstroke
The Ukraine’s Daryna Zevina won the women’s 200 backstroke in a time of 2:01.97 breaking both her own Championship and National Record of 2:02.25 set in 2011.
“I set a new personal best today, and that should be a good starting point for the World Championships in Istanbul.”
In this race, just as we saw in the 100 breaststroke a Czech swimmer was out fast. At the 100 meter mark Simona Baumrtova was tied with Zevina in a time of 1:00.71. In the second half Baumrtova could not hold off Alexianne Castel of France who finished second in a time of 2:03.23.
“I totally changed my life – new city, new club, new job. Considering that I train only once a day, it is an excellent result to win silver at European Championships.”
Simona Baumrtova finished in a time of 2:03.43 breaking her own Czech Republic National Record of 2:05.07 set in 2009.
“I am very happy, it was a good performance. Now I have to get out quickly to prepare for the relay.”
Men’s 50 Butterfly
The men’s 100 butterfly was a nail biter with Rafael Perez Munoz of Spain out touching Frederick Bousquet of France by one one-hundredth of a second.
Munoz finished in a time of 22.53 destroying the Italian National Record of 23.12 set by Marco Belotti in 2009.
“There was a lot of luck in the race… In this morning’s heat it wasn’t going well for me, but this afternoon I had the necessary confidence and won by the blink of an eye.”
Bousquet touch for second in a time of 22.54. A race that was extremely disappoint for the Frenchman, “It’s hard to be beaten by one hundredth of a second! I’m disappointed.”
Ukrainian Andiriy Govorov finished third in a time of 22.72, “I didn’t have a very good feeling for these Championships. We trained hard until almost up to the beginning of the event in Chartres. Our preparations for the short course season are totally aimed at the Worlds in Istanbul.”
Women’s 50 Freestyle
In the women’s 50 freestyle Aliaksandra Herasimeni Belarus finished in a time of 23.85 breaking her own National Record of 23.95 set in 2009.
“That’s a great finish for me at these Championships. I’ m truly proud of myself. I was convinced of winning gold, but when you get onto the starting block, there is always a little bit of uncertainty.
Triin Aljand of Estonia finished second in a time of 24.24.
“I was really disappointed after the fly, and then I watched my brother winning a medal. That was the incentive for me to also win a medal, and I’m happy that I did it.”
With Jeanette Ottensen Gray of Denmark finishing in third with a time of 24.33.
Men’s 4 x 50 Freestyle Relay
The French team made up of Florent Manaudou (20.83), Frederick Bousquet (20.65), Jeremy Stravius (21.00) and Amaury Leveaux (20.83) finished the meet with a win in the 4 x 50 Freestyle relay in a time of 1:23.31.
“As the last men’s race of the Champonships ,we of course planned to win the relay. I received a medal yeasterday as a heat swimmer, but now I have a real gold medal because I swam in the final,” comment Amaury Leveaux.
Russia came in second in a time 1:23.99. Vladimir Morozov lead off the relay with an impressive 20.78, “As the start swimmer I was five hundredths faster than Olympic champion Manaudou. That makes me proud and gives me confidence for the future.”
The Belgium men who no longer want to be seen as a surprise finished third in a time of 1:25.60,”At the Olympics everybody was surprised when we made it into the final. But it wasn’t a surprise to us that we won a medal today. Three medals in one afternoon is certainly something special for Belgium,” said Pieter Timmers.
Women’s 4 x 50 Medley Relay
The final event in this year’s European Short Course Swimming Championships was a dandy.
It all came down to the freestyle with the Czech Republic women leading after the breaststroke in a time of 1:22.91, Denmark second in a time of 1:23.09 and France in third in a time of 1:23.38. Piernille Blume finished in a time of 24.32 giving Denmark the win in a time of 1:47.41, Aneta Pechancova finished in a time of 24.76 to hold off the French women whose Anna Santamans finished in 24.32.
The Czech women finished second in a time of 1:47.67 with the French women finishing in third in a time of 1:47.70.
“I’m not at all happy with my performance here at these Championships, but we are more than happy with our relay success,” commented Jeanette Ottensen Gray.
“This was an amazing race. When we jumped into the pool we never expected to win a medal. It is so great to swim together and share that silver medal,” Simona Baumrtova
“I missed a medal by two hundredths of a second in the 50m freestyle a few moments ago, so I thought I had to give my best in this relay. It is nice to win this medal and finish the Championships on a high,” commented Anna Santamans.