European Junior Championships: Day 4 Flash Quotes


  • Tuesday, July 5th – Sunday, July 10th
  • Otopeni Olympic Swimming Complex, Bucharest, Romania
  • LCM (50m)
  • Start Times
    • Prelims: 10 a.m. local / 3 a.m. ET
    • Finals: 5 p.m. local / 10 a.m. ET
  • Meet Central
  • Entries
  • Live Results
  • Live Stream

Daniel Gracik of the Czech Republic picked up the first gold medal of night four. Gracik won the boys 100 fly in a 52.69. He spoke of his reaction saying he “couldn’t believe my eyes.” He went a best time as it was “the first time ever I went under 53sec, which is amazing.”

Gracik also spoke of the confidence he had coming into the race saying, “I expected a medal, I even thought of gold, and I kept believing in myself. Perhaps that’s how I managed to achieve this.”

France’s Lucien Vergnes had a huge swim in the boys 200 breaststroke. Vergnes was behind the leader by 1.68 seconds at the 150 mark but won in a 2:13.02. Vergnes said he followed his race plan as, “This was my plan, to have a really strong finish… Well, it wasn’t easy, and it turned out to be a very small margin at the end but I’m really happy that I could make it.”

Vergnes’ time was also huge as he had never been under the 2:15 mark until he swam a 2:13.36 in semifinals. Tonight, he was faster with a 2:13.02. He spoke on his best time saying, “Well, my time… This is crazy, my best was above 2:15, it’s simply amazing (to clock 2:13.02). I cannot be any happier now.”

David Popovici of Romania defended his title in the boys 50 free.  Popovici swam a 22.22 last year to win the event, but was slightly faster with a best time of 22.16 tonight.

Despite a best time, Popovici expressed some frustration on his swim saying, “I was focusing on winning too much that’s why I messed up my finish. I must keep focusing on the race, on my swim, this was another good lesson in that regard.”

Breaking her own Estonian National Record in the girls 200 breast was Eneli Jefimova swimming a time of 2:26.85. Jefimova was over a second and a half behind the least with a 50 to go but came home strong on the last 50 for the win. She spoke on her reaction saying, “I was a bit emotional at the end as it was a very-very hard race.”

She also spoke on her plan with her coach for the race saying, “My coach knew that I was good enough to have a chance in this event, we made a plan and it worked,
with some luck at the end.”

Poland’s Ksawery Masiuk defended his title in the boys 200 backstroke swimming a time of 1:56.62. Although he earned the win, it did not come easy as he said “Oh, it was really tough, after the first 100m I felt the pain already but for the last 50m it all went away as I was focusing only on my speed which really hit the right gear… I think I turned second but I felt I was really going.”

Masiuk also had spoken of his goal before the saying saying, “I told my friend Filip (Kosinski, bronze medallist) that I just wanted to do a sub-1:58 – and I went under 1:57, that’s absolutely amazing!”

In another come-back win, Dora Molnar of Hungary won the girls 200 back in a 2:10.31. Molnar spoke of her awareness in the race saying, “I didn’t lead over the first 150m, but I was aware of that and prepared myself for the big finish.” She also knew her strengths saying, “I’m strong in the underwater dolphin kicks and I relied on that and on my strong last 50m.”

Poland’s Michal Piela earned the final win of the night in the boys 400 IM. Piela spoke of his strategy in prelims saying, “I tried to save as much energy as possible since we had no off-day after the 200m IM final we had swum yesterday. This put me into a bit scary position as I qualified only for lane 1.”

As a result of being in lane 1 Piela said he “decided to push a bit harder in the first half and I felt it went well, I had enough energy left for the second half, especially for the free.” He said he hoped for a better time but “with no rest between the 200m and 400m this is still great – and I try do a better one at the Worlds in Peru.”

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About Anya Pelshaw

Anya Pelshaw

Anya has been with SwimSwam since June 2021 as both a writer and social media coordinator. She was in attendance at the 2022 Women's NCAA Championships writing and doing social media for SwimSwam. Currently, Anya is pursuing her B.A. in Government & Law and Economics at Lafayette College. There she is …

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