Honda Rips 1:55 200 Fly To Rank #1, Sato Hits 59.5 100 Breast In Tokyo


Day 2 of the 96th Japan Student Swimming Championships brought the heat, with 19-year-old Shoma Sato getting under the minute mark in the men’s 100m breast for the first time in his career.

Sato, who is the reigning 200m breast world junior record holder and also a member of the sub-2:08 club in that event, posted a 100m breast time tonight of 59.55 to take the gold here in Tokyo. Splitting 28.37/31.18, Sato scorched the old meet record of 59.68 to represent one of two swimmers in the race to get under the minute mark.

Joining Sato under the minute barrier was runner-up Takada Taishi, who punched a mark of 59.94 for silver. Taishi hit a quicker 28.20 on the way out but saw Sato surpass him on the way home.

Sato finished well off the podium in this sprint event at last year’s World Junior Championships, posting a mark there in Budapest of 1:01.26 to place 7th.

The women’s 100m breast saw Kono Miyasaka of Meiji University out-touch Mui Fukasawa of Niigata Medical with the former grabbing gold in 1:07.43 to the latter’s 1:07.61.

Two-time gold medalist at last year’s World University Games, Waka Kobori, topped the women’s 400m free field here in a new meet record mark. The Nihon University swimmer clocked a time of 4:08.59 to edge out a charging Kinuko Michizuki. Kanagawa’s Michizuki hit the wall less than half a second later in 4:08.81, with the two separated from the rest of the field most of the race.

On-fire Suzuka Hasegawa got it done in the women’s 200m fly, punching a winning effort of 2:07.82. Hasegawa has been impressive as of late, registering a lifetime best of 2:05.62 in late August to become Japan’s 2nd fastest 200m flyer all-time.

The men’s 200m fly saw a speedy result by winner Tomoru Honda. The emerging Nihon ace produced a stellar 1:55.76 to wrap up gold, splitting 55.76/1:00.00.

Honda’s effort here was enough to beat out last year’s champion Nao Horomura, who settled for silver tonight in 1:56.16. Last year Horomura took the top spot in a time of 1:55.43.

For Honda, his near lifetime best would have rendered him as the 7th place finisher at last year’s FINA World Aquatic Championships. The 18-year-old is the reigning World Junior Championships silver medalists after posting a time of 1:55.31 last year to finish just .29 behind winner Luca Urlando of the United States.

Honda now replaces Horomura atop the world rankings in the men’s 200m fly event this season, keeping in mind there have been fewer meets due to the coronavirus pandemic.

2020-2021 LCM Men 200 Fly

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Kanto Gakuen University cleared the competition in the women’s 4 x 100m freestyle relay, setting a new meet mark in the process. The combination of Rio Shirai, Natsumi Sakai, Yuki Tanaka, and Moon Imai collectively clocked a winning effort of 3:40.26. Splits included 54.59, 54.49, 56.78, and 54.40 for the victory.

Team Kanto was also successful in the men’s relay, with Kota Ichikawa, Yosuke Onuki, Hideya Imoto, and Juran Mizohata snagging the top prize in a time of 3:17.72. Beating the field by over a second, the squad’s performance was highlighted by Mizohata’s closing split of 48.43.

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Former Polar Bear
8 months ago

Shoma Sato is the junior world record holder but Josh Matheny is the reigning Junior World Champion in the 200m breast.

8 months ago

Sato is having a great year!

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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