European Championships: Ponti, Ivanov, Sancov lowered national records, 200 fly

2021 LEN European Aquatics Championships

At least 3 National Records went down on Tuesday morning in the heats of the men’s 200 meter butterfly at the European Championships. Switzerland’s Noe Ponti, Bulgaria’s Antani Ivanov, and Moldova’s Alexei Sancov each broke their respective National Records in the heats.

Noe Ponti set a new Swiss Record to qualify 4th overall. The 19-year-old improved his own record from 1:56.48 to 1:55.67 in heat 2. Ponti has managed to drop nearly 3 seconds in the 200 meter butterfly from December 2019 to May 2021.

Splits Comparison:

Ponti Ponti Ponti
New Record Old Record (December 2020)
December 2019 Best
50m 25.39 26.25 26.39
100m 29.22 29.87 30.1
150m 30.4 30.36 30.72
200m 30.66 30 31.75
Final Time 1:55.67 1:56.48 1:58.96

The 2018 European Youth Champion in the 50m fly has verbally committed to join the NC State Wolfpack in the United States in the fall of 2021.

Bulgarian Antani Ivanov, meanwhile, cracked the Bulgarian national record with a time of 1:54.72. He is the number-two qualifier into finals behind only the World Record holder Kristof Milak.

Ivanov also broke his own record, bettering his former mark of 1:55.55, held by himself. Ivanov made his debut on the international swimming stage at the 2017 World Championships. He’ll represent his country in this event at the postponed 2020 Olympic Games later this summer.

Splits Comparison:

Ivanov Ivanov
New Record
Old Record (2017 World Championships)
50m 25.83 25.78
100m 28.98 29.13
150m 29.93 30.09
200m 29.98 30.55
Final Time 1:54.72 1:55.55

Alexei Sancov, a Moldovan who trains in the United States at USC, also set a national record for his home country with a time of 1:57.78 to win heat one. That time put him into the semifinals on the 16th spot. The 21-year-old entered the competition much better known as a sprint butterflier and especially as a freestyler: his previous best time in the 200 fly was 2:10.34.

The previous National Record was a 2:06.60 set by Oleg Litinov in 1986 – more than 40 years ago.

Sancov competed in the men’s 200m freestyle at the 2016 Summer Olympics and placed 34th (1:48.85).


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