The second stage of the French Swimming Federation’s “Golden Tour” is under way in Amiens. Finals took place Friday night in the men’s 800m free, then m/w 50 free, m/w 200 back, m/w 100 breast, and m/w 100 fly.
The Golden Tour is a four-stage series, not unlike the Arena Pro Series, with total prize winnings of €140,000. Each stage awards €25,000 in prize money among the top 8 women and top 8 men, and the top swimmers of the series will receive bonus prizes from a total purse of €40,000.
On Friday, racing began with the men’s 800m free. Damien Joly from Antibes came in ahead of the field with 7:56.90. David Verraszto of HUN was second in 8:02.87, just ahead of GER’s Jacob Heidtmann (8:03.69).
The first podium for the women was that of the 50m free. Ranomi Kromowidjojo of NED took the contest in 24.80, placing her in the top 5 in the world so far this year. Her teammate Femke Heemskerk was second in 25.10, while French record-holder Anna Santamans of Nice went 25.27 for third, just ahead of Katinka Hosszu (25.44). There were no big surprises in the men’s sprint. Florent Manaudou claimed the victory in a world-leading 21.81, .08 faster than he had been in Nice. Second place went to his Marseille teammate Frédérick Bousquet, swimming very well since coming back from surgery, with 22.68. Marseille’s Mehdy Metella picked up third place in 22.89. Yannick Agnel, now training in Mulhouse, went 23.35 for sixth.
Hosszu won the 200m back handily, in 2:10.09, .06 faster than in Nice. Second was Hungary’s Evelyn Verraszto, who trains with Olympic Nice, in 2:14.13, and third was Germany’s Lisa Graf with 2:17.90. Jérémy Stravius won the men’s 200 back over GER’s Christian Diener, who took the gold in Nice. It was about a second slower this time, 1:59.37 to 1:59.96. David Verraszto was third in 2:03.87.
The women’s 100 breast was quite a bit faster than at the last stage of the Golden Tour. Moniek Nijhuis (NED) won in 1:08.94 in front of Nice’s Charlotte Bonnet (1:09.62) who was .4 faster than her winning performance in Nice. Hosszu grabbed third in 1:10.23. Marseille’s Giacomo Perez Dortona earned his second 100 breast gold in a row, just edging GER’s Marco Koch, 1:01.20 to 1:01.26. Koch’s teammate Hendrik Feldwehr came in .01 behind with 1:01.27.
The final event on Friday was a much faster 100 fly than in Nice; the top four finishers all came in under a minute. Inge Dekker (NED) won with 58.25; Nice’s Marie Wattel, who had won the event in front of her home crowd in 59.0, went 58.68 for second. Hosszu was third in 59.06, just ahead of Verraszto (59.56). Marseille’s Metella picked up his second 100 fly gold in the series, going 52.41, .45 faster than in Nice. Jordan Coelho of Vanves placed second with 53.96; he, too, was faster in Amiens. Third went to Italy’s Valerio Coggi, who trains in Antibes, with 54.41.
Women’s Leaderboard After Day One of the Amiens Stage
- Katinka HOSSZU 31
- Inge DEKKER 16
- Evelyn VERRASZTO 14
- Femke HEEMSKERK 13
- Moniek NIJHUIS 12
- Ranomi KROMOWIDJOJO 12
- Charlotte BONNET 12
- Marie WATTEL 9
Men’s Leaderboard After Day One of the Amiens Stage
- Mehdy METELLA 19
- David VERRASZTO 18
- Jérémy STRAVIUS 12
- Damien JOLY 12
- Florent MANAUDOU 12
- Giacomo PEREZ DORTONA 12
- Frédérick BOUSQUET 9
- Christian DIENER 9
- Marco KOCH 9
- Jordan COELHO 9
As a reminder, prize money is awarded, per state of the tour, as follows:
|Women||Per Meet||Men||Per Meet|
|High point||€4000||High point||€4000|
An additional bonus is split among series winners at the conclusion of the four meets
|Women||Series Bonus||Men||Series Bonus|
|High point||€6500||High point||€6500|
The four stages of the Golden Tour include:
|January 30-February 1||Nice|
For French swimmers, the first three stages will serve as an excellent high-level competitive environment in which to practice racing before French Long Course Nationals in Limoges from March 31-April 5. The Limoges meet will be used to select the French national team for the 2015 FINA World Championships in Kazan.