The Amiens stage of the French Swimming Federation’s “Golden Tour” wound up on Sunday with yet another outstanding showing from Katinka Hosszu. Not only has the Hungarian raced in all 16 events during each stage of the tour so far, but she has made all 32 finals and been on the podium 24 times (16 gold, 3 silver, 5 bronze).
Hosszu got things off to a strong start in the 50 back, which she won in 28.43, nearly a full second faster than her third-place finish in Nice. That puts her squarely in the world’s top ten for the season. Maaike De Waard of Netherlands came in just behind with 28.64. Camille Gheorghiu of Antibes took third in 29.22.
The home club favorite, Jérémy Stravius, won the 50 back fairly easily in the absence of French rival Camille Lacourt, whose entire Marseille team left on Sunday for a two-week training trip in Thailand and missed the final day of competition in Amiens. Stravius touched in 25.20, which is the second-fastest 50 so far this season behind Lacourt’s 24.89 from the Golden Tour in Nice. Second place went to Amiens teammate Eddie Moueddene in 25.87. Turkey’s Iskender Baslakov was third with 26.28.
Hosszu won the women’s 400 free for the second straight time on the Golden Tour, but this time everyone was a little off. Hosszu went 4:07.36 for the win, a tad slower than in Nice, while second-place Coralie Balmy of Mulhouse and third-place Annika Bruhn of Germany were more significantly off-pace, going 4:13.01 and 4:18.91, respectively.
Damien Joly of Antibes, who also won the 800 free, put up a much more controlled 400 free than in Nice, and as a consequence, improved his time by 2.5 seconds. Joly won in 3:53.06, with Maarten Brzoskowski of Netherlands (3:55.34) and Amiens’ Simon Guerin (3:57.74) rounding out the podium.
Hosszu made it three-for-three when she came in at 2:09.59, almost four seconds faster than in her 200 fly final in Nice. That bumped her up into the top ten for the season. Evelyn Verraszto of Nice improved her time by 1.5 seconds over the last outing and finished second, ahead of Nice teammate Marie Wattel, who placed third in 2:15.75.
David Verraszto of Hungary had an easier time to the podium in Amiens than in Nice, winning in an improved 1:58.82 over Great Britain’s Cameron Brodie (1:59.40) and Mickael Gunning (2:01.43).
Moniek Nijhuis of Netherlands clocked a world-leading 31.06 to win the 50 breast. Nice’s Bonnet came in second with 31.95, while Nolwenn Herve of Thionville was third in 32.21.
In an all-German men’s podium, Hendrik Feldwehr, who had also won the event in Nice, improved his time by .4 for a 27.76. That puts him second in the world so far this year. Compatriots Marco Koch (28.24) and Christian Vom Lehn (28.82) placed second and third, respectively.
Hosszu and Verraszto, the perennial favorites in the IMs here on the Golden Tour, were first and second once again, albeit a little slower than in Nice. Hosszu finished with 2:11.93, while Verraszto went 2:15.73. Adeline Martin of Antibes, who had won the 200 breast in Amiens with a huge 2-second drop from her seed time, used a strong third leg to overtake two competitors and finish third with 2:18.30.
Jeremy Desplanches of Switzerland, who trains with the team in Nice, led from wire to wire in the men’s 200 IM. Germany’s Koch had a stronger second half but couldn’t quite catch Desplanches; he finished second in 2:01.89. Third place went to David Verraszto, who looked a little less fresh after his 200 fly.
Femke Heemskerk scorched the 100 free, winning by more than a second in 53.63, and landing herself a top-three world time for the season. Ranomi Kromowidjojo, the 50 free champion, tried to chase her down, but Heemskerk was out in 25.94 and back in 27.7 and there was no catching her. Kromowidjojo got to the wall second in 54.85, just in front of Nice’s Bonnet, a great finisher whose last 15 meters earned her third place in 54.86.
There was a lot of commotion at the start of the men’s race, as the crowd got behind Stravius whose prelims race had landed him lane 2 for finals. Stravius did not disappoint the home crowd: out in 23.9, Stravius led the entire race and finished .11 faster than in Nice. He hit the wall in 49.40 and was the only sub-50 in the final. Sebastiaan Verschuren of Netherlands took second in 50.10; Robert Renwick of Great Britian was .05 back in third.
The French Federation published a more explicit explanation of the calculations behind the series bonus structure, in the promotional materials it distributed prior to Amiens. The overall rankings will be based on points earned for first, second, and third place finishes (1st: 12 points, 2nd: 9 points, 3rd: 7 points) in each race, taking into account only the top six finishes per swimmer per stage. Only those swimmers who have participated in at least three of the four stages will be considered for bonus prizes.
Keeping that in mind, below are the winners of the Amiens stage of the Golden Tour.
Women’s Earnings for the Amiens Stage of the Golden Tour
Men’s Earnings for the Amiens Stage of the Golden Tour
The presumptive leaders of the series, after two stages and using the FFN’s new calculations methods, are:
|Women||Series Bonus||Men||Series Bonus|
|High point||€6500||High point||€6500|
The four stages of the Golden Tour:
|January 30-February 1||Nice|