Kazan, Russian, November 12, 2014 – The final night of Russian Short Course Nationals brought along its share of drama, as several Russian records fell throughout the session on both the men’s and the women’s sides.
The first women’s event was the 4 x 50m freestyle relay, which was won by Moscow in a time of 1:39.71. Next up for the women was the 50m backstroke event, where Alexandra Papusha earned the win with her time of 27.11 over Nadezhda Vinyukova (27.47) and Dara Ustinova (27.49).
The first world rankings shake-up on the women’s side occurred with the 200m breaststroke race with Vitalina Simonova taking first place in a new Russian record time of 2:18.03. Simonova’s time also rocketed her to third in the world in the 200m breast event. Yuliya Efimova held the previous Russian record at 2:18.50 set back in October of 2013.
Another move in the short course world rankings came with the women’s 100m butterfly, where Svetlana Chimrova’s time of 57.03 positions her now as eighth in the world rankings. Her time here also serves as a new Russian record, surpassing the previous mark of 57.35 that she also held since November 2013.
The women’s 50m freestyle saw a fast first place time by Rosalia Nasretdinova at 24.34, but it wasn’t fast enough to crack the world’s top ten. However, a blistering 1:53.09 by Veronika Popova in the women’s 200m freestyle was enough to move into the fourth spot in the world rankings in this event. She also downed her own Russian record, previously set at 1:53.62 in Denmark back in December of 2013. Victoria Andreeva (1:55.32) finished in second place in the 200m freestyle, while Arina Openysheva finished in third with her time of 1:56.40.
The women’s portion of the final session concluded with a win by Sveralovsk in the 4 x 100 medley relay in 3:56.64.
The men’s races started off in fine form, with Danila Izotov topping the men’s 100m freestyle field in a speedy 46.66. Although this wasn’t as fast as his 46.49 now-fourth-in-the-world ranked time from semis, it still was enough to take over the sixth fastest time in the world this year. Sergei Fesik (46.67, now seventh in the world) and Nikita Konovalov (47.15) rounded out the top three finishers.
The 200m backstroke for the men did not offer up any movement in the world rankings, but a solid effort was produced by the winner, Dmitry Gorbunov, in 1:53.79. Interesting to note is that Arkady Vyatchanin, the now country-less swimmer who previously competed for Russia, still holds the Russian record in the 200m backstroke in 1:46.11. That record (unless broken by another swimmer) will remain, even if Vyatchanin subsequently competes for another country.
Vyacheslav Prudnikov earned the win in the men’s 100m IM in a time of 53.58, while Eugene Kulikov raced to a first place time of 14:56.79 in the 1500m freestyle. More world ranking changes took place, however, in the men’s 50m breaststroke race, where Cyril Prigoda cracked the top ten, moving to sixth in the world, with his winning time of 26.48. Second place finisher, Sergey Geibel now sits in the eighth ranked position, tied with Joao Gomes of Brazil, with a time of 26.54.
Alexander Kudashev won the men’s 200 butterfly in a time of 1:51.80, which moves him into sixth in the world in this event. He was followed by countrymen Nikolay Skvortsov (1:52.83) and Ion Bogdon (1:55.48). The men finished the night with the 4 x 100 free relay, won by St. Petersburg in a time of 3:28.92. Oleg Tihobaev anchored the St. Petersburg team in 46.36, the fastest split of the entire event.