2016 European Junior Championships: Brandt Wins With Sub-3:50 400 Free on Day 1


The sprint action on day one of the 2016 European Junior Championships didn’t disappoint, with the men’s 50 fly and women’s 50 breast races seeing less than a tenth between 1st and 2nd. In the 50 fly, Ukraine’s Andrii Khloptssov tore through the water to win the event in 23.51, just touching out Spain’s Mateos Alberto Lozano (23.53). The Slovenian duo of Tina Selik and Tara Vovk took gold and silver in the 50 breast, with Selik taking the win in 31.85, just ahead of Vovk’s 31.93. Also sub-32 for 3rd place was Ireland’s Mona McSharry (31.98), the Irish Junior Record holder in the 100 breast.

Germany’s Moritz Brandt, a finalist at the 2016 German Nationals in the 400 free, was 3 seconds faster today than he was at that meet. Brandt won the event in a blistering 3:48.57, making him the only swimmer under 3:50. Sweden’s Victor Johansson was just a couple tenths shy of breaking 3:50, coming in at 3:50.21 for silver. Hungary’s Richard Marton (3:52.01) closed out the top 3 behind him.

Serbia’s Anja Crevar took the title in the women’s 400 IM, taking off on the backstroke leg and never losing that lead on her way a 4:41.54. Battling closely behind her were Italy’s Anna Pirovano (4:42.06)  and Great Britain’s Abbie Wood (4:42.13), who were separated by less than a tenth for 2nd and 3rd.

Both the men and women swam the 4×100 free relay final tonight. Despite a sub-50 leadoff from Alessandro Miressi (49.61) and a 48.96 anchor from Izzo Giovanni, the Italian men were unable to beat out Russia for the gold. The Russians took the title in 3:19.29 to Italy’s 3:19.42, highlighted by a 49.19 split from Mikhail Vekovishchev.

Denmark took the women’s 400 free relay, coming from behind with a huge 54.80 from Julie Kepp Jensen. That gave them the edge over Russia (3:44.35) and Great Britain (3:45.25), who finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

The men’s 100 back was one of the highlights from the semifinal races today, with Greece’s Nikolaos Sofianidis taking the top spot with a 54.43, just ahead of Ireland’s Connor Ferguson in 54.47. Notably, Spain’s Hugo Gonzalez, a finalist at last summer’s Junior World Championships, will be in the mix in finals after qualifying 3rd with a 54.94. Gonzalez qualified to swim for Spain in Rio, where he’ll compete in the 200 back.

Day 1 Event Winners

  • Women’s 400 IM: Anja Crevar (SRB), 4:41.54
  • Men’s 400 Free: Moritz Brandt (GER), 3:48.57
  • Men’s 50 Fly: Andrii Khloptssov (UKR), 23.51
  • Women’s 50 Breast: Tina Čelik (SLO), 31.85
  • Women’s 800 Free: Ajna Kesely (HUN), 8:34.37
  • Men’s 400 Free Relay: Russia, 3:19.29
  • Women’s 400 Free Relay: Denmark, 3:43.42

Day 1 Semifinal Winners

  • Men’s 200 Breast: Kirill Mordashev (RUS), 2:11.84
  • Women’s 200 Fly: Emily Large (GBR), 2:10.40
  • Women’s 100 Free: Barbora Seemanova (CZE), 55.17
  • Men’s 100 Back: Nikolaos Sofianidis (GRE), 54.43
  • Women’s 200 Back: Tazmin Pugh (GBR), 2:12.14

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Some good news from a UK perspective – A girl I mentioned as one-to-watch on Swimswam last year, Freya Anderson (2001), had a huge PB in the 100 freestyle. She swam 54.99 in the heats – Her previous PB was 56.4 and she started 2016 with a best of 57.3. She was 4.14 over 400free untapered a few months ago (56high in 100 at same time) so I think we could see her challenge Kesely in the 200 – She isn’t down to swim the 400. Also watch for her in the 100 breast. She is very tall for her age, not far off 6ft, and I really think we’ll see her and her younger sister (200-800 free) make big… Read more »


PBs of Ajna Kesely (2001) 55.93,1:58.06,4:07.90,8:34.37. All of them Hungarian Records from 14-16 years of age, the 200m also in 17. So yesterday she swam PB in 800m and 5 minutes later 56.29 as the first member of the 4x100free relay team.


Kesely is a huge talent – I just think we could see a better race in the 200m than it looks on paper. I suspect Anderson would be 4.09/4.10 this week if she swam 400, based purely on such a huge drop over 100m. Both girls *should* be 1.58ish


I think Kesely will swim a 1:57.5 later this week.


It would be awesome to see!


Me too.


Very impressive swim by Brand, clearly the best Performance of day 1. I am a bit disappointed by Kesely, obviously she isnt tapered, otherwise she would destroy everyone else in womens 200/400/800 free. Sadly the same is true for most german talents, many of them tapered for the german Championships in order to qualify for Rio and now they arent at their best. I think this is the first time in many years that our talents on the mens side look more promising. I think this time we wont win as many medals as in previous years. Bermel (mens 1500 free), maybe Klenz (mens 100 fly/200 IM), maybe Brandt (mens 200 fly), maybe Wolters (womens 200 back/200 IM), maybe Mrozinski… Read more »


Kesely swam a PB in the 800 and was only just off her best in the 100m – Why are you disappointed in her? Really harsh on such a young girl. I imagine she tapered somewhat for Europeans, as I think we all suspected a lot of the Hungarians did, so we’ll see how close to those times she can get.


She should be much faster in the 800 free with a 200 free PB of 1:58.1 and a 400 free PB of 4:07, but maybe she is more of a 200/400 free swimmer.

And why do you feel the need to quote me all the time, its really annoying?


It’s the very beginning of the Champs and she won this race by more than 2 secs. Why should she be much faster? She has “A” cuts in 200 and 400. Why should she swim faster in the 800 before Rio?


So she doesnt want to swim the 800 free individually? Is it safe that she will swim 200/400 free individually in Rio? So you are saying she couldve been faster but didnt want to? This doesnt really make any sense to me. I dont doubt that she has the potential to be much faster, but i just think she tries to win a couple of gold medals here without really tapering, in order to be at 100% for Rio, where she could reach the final in womens 400 free and womens 800 free relay.


If Katinka won’t swim the 200/400/800 than Kapas and Kesely the first two. In 800 Kapas and Risztov. I said that she had’t been in training for 800. Only for 200 and 400. And yes Hungary is good for final in 800 relay.


She hasn’t got an A cut in 800 so she can’t swim it.


I just pointed out that calling her disappointing, she won gold comfortably. Swimswam forum is for debate.


The EJSC is in Hungary, so every Hungarian swimmers tapered a bit for it.


I think overall Hintze and Gonzalez are probably the biggest talents on the mens side in europe in this age group, on the womens side the biggest talents should be Steenbergen and Kesely.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona and the University of Florida. While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She is now coaching for Loggerhead Aquatics in her hometown …

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