EUROPEAN RECORD: Ruta Meilutyte Breaks Continental; Meet Records

We still have not seen a World Record go down yet in 2013, but Lithuanian 16-year old Ruta Meilutyte has come about as close as one can get without actually taking the record down.

The Olympic Champion, Meilutyte went a 1:04.52 in prelims on Monday morning to break both the World Championship Record as well as her own Meet Record.

The former European (and Lithuanian) Records belonged to her at 1:05.20, while the World Championships Record was Rebecca Soni’s from the destructive 2009 World Championship meet, belonging to Rebecca Soni in 1:04.84.

Meilutyte is still just shy of the World Record, which was set in August of 2009 at the U.S. Open. That mark is a 1:04.45 belonging to Jessica Hardy (she likely would have broken the Meet Record, but was ineligible to swim at Worlds as she had still not returned from a year-long doping suspension to qualify for the World Championship team).

Hardy, meanwhile, will be center stage if the record does go down in Tuesday evening’s semi-finals; she was 2nd in prelims in 1:05.18, and Russia’s Yuliya Efimova was 3rd.

Keep in mind that last year, at the Olympics, Meilutyte was also very fast in prelims, got a little better in the semi-finals, and then dropped off in the finals. With a field that looks to be much deeper this year, she may not be able to afford that same pattern in 2013.

See the full day 2 prelims recap here.

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Philip Johnson

That WR is going down … always a good day to see a suit record go down.

aswimfan

The fourth (textile) WR so far. All by girls!

the boys have been lazy.

C Martin

Maybe it’s because the females’ suits are closer in design to the super suits than the mens’ are (in terms of coverage). Remember, they went from shoulder to ankle for both genders. Women currently have suits extending from shoulder to knee, whereas men have just waist to knee. The ladies have approximately 25% of their suit coverage missing, and the men have over 50%. Since they race in the same fabric, it is safe to conclude that it might just be the lack of coverage for the men that accounts for slower times (just my humble opinion).

Tea

A very good, and often-overlooked point.
The 2009 suit changes affected men a lot more than women.

SwimFanFinland

C Martin, that’s absolutely correct. I have also waited a good moment to point that out. I saw Eurosport’s magazine programme aimed at introducing the latest innovations in textile suits, such as how to extract carbon from a textile which makes it faster. It’s just how I’ve feared. A suit made of textile doesn’t mean that a swimmer cannot take advantage of a suit. On the contrary, they are becoming better all the time; no wonder after shiny suits evidenced what a fast suit is capable of. The whole separation between shiny and textile suits, then and now, is getting slowly but surely outdated. This time FINA must react early and before it’s too late – once again. Now it… Read more »

DanishSwimFan

It’s an interesting point and ties in with a comment you made before about getting sponsorship into the sport from outside swimwear companies. All the companies want to innovate in suit manufacture so that the best swimmers wear their suits and non-sponsored swimmers buy them because they think they get an advantage and they can swim like Ryan Lochte/Missy Franklin/Katinka Hosszu or whatever if they wear THAT suit. The more we try to standardise suits and restrict technical improvements so that it’s pure swimming skill and fitness that is tested, is there a danger that there is less incentive for these companies to put money into the sport? It’s perhaps not as easy a problem to solve as we might… Read more »

SwimFanFinland

I admit, you made an excellent counter-argument. That danger is more than real.

Hugo Miller

Boys are lazy… LOL!! That made me spit my coffee out laughing!! So true at any age.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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