Hungarian Swimmers Echo Dour Notes After 1st Day of Championships

2017 Hungarian National Championships

  • April 19th-22nd, 2017
  • Debrecen, Hungary
  • LCM
  • Results

In a meet hyped by its federation as the “greatest Hungarian National Championship ever,” the first day of the 2017 Hungarian National Championships left a lot of long faces among the country’s top swimmers.

In their post-race comments, most of the day’s winners cited disappointment in their results. Boglarka Kapas wanted to be under 16 minutes in the 1500 free, but “failed,” in her words, with a 16:04.19 – still a 10-second margin of victory. Katinka Hosszu was 3rd in 16:18.72.

Daniel Gyurta, who took off 3 months after Rio and changed coaches, says that the “last 50 (of the 200 breaststroke) did not turn out the way we had planned.” He still had enough to win the men’s 200 breaststroke, rather easily, in 2:09.72.

His brother Gergely Gyurta is a few weeks back from hospitalization with a serious viral infection, and says that he didn’t get his strength back yet. He had enough, though, to win the men’s 800 free in 7:55.85, which is just 4 seconds from his lifetime best.

Kenderesi Tamas, winner of the 200 fly in 1:54.89, echoed Gergely’s complaints about a virus sapping his strength. That time moves him to 3rd in the World Rankings this season.

2016-2017 LCM MEN 200 FLY

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The country’s top maleveteran Laszlo Cseh, who took silver in Rio in the 100 fly, placed just 4th in that 200 fly in 1:56.82. Cseh, admitting that he didn’t return to training until January, said that while he knows his spot in Budapest is assured, he was not happy with his swim – saying he has the stamina, but his technique is not where he wants it to be, and that he needs to “get a feel of the rhythm” again.

Zsu Jakabos, who won the women’s 200 fly in 2:08.06, said her evening swim felt “effortless,” but that she expected a better time. That result won the day, but because it didn’t make the federation-mandated “A” time, Katinka Hosszu (who was 8th in the final in 2:15.77) and Olympian Liliana Szilagyi will be entitled to the spots in Budapest. Jakabos would get a swim in this race if Hosszu chose to scratch in favor of other events.

After a historic Olympic Games, the country’s top athletes sound frustrated with themselves and their results in the first day, while the administration remains upbeat in anticipation of hosting the 2017 World Championships. The country has 3 months to figure out that dichotomy, or else the gamble of accepting hosting duties for this year, instead of the originally-intended 2019 championships, could wind up back-firing to capture the domestic momentum.

Katinka Hosszu swam every race of the session, but didn’t win any of them.

Other Day 1 Winners:

  • Katalin Burian won the women’s 200 backstroke in 2:09.85. Hosszu was 3rd in that race in 2:13.47.
  • Peter Bernek won the men’s 200 back in 1:56.69 – half-a-second ahead of Adam Telegdy.
  • Reka Vecsei won the women’s 200 breaststroke in 2:28.61. Hosszu again grabbed a minor medal, placing 2nd in 2:29.47.
  • Teenager Flora Molnar won the women’s 50 free in 25.41, beating Evelyn Verraszto (25.88). Hosszu took 4th in 25.96.
  • Krisztian Takacs won the men’s 50 free in 22.39, just out-touching Maxim Lobanovskij (22.41). Lobanovskij is 11-years younger than Takacs.


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3 years ago

Sorry to say, but Rio was rather catastrophic than historic for Hungary. Hosszu alone saved it for the country.
Kenderesi being sick again is neither the best omen to have it different this year.
That “new” federation is a joke, and they call this Nationals a tribute to Tamas Szechy…

Mitch Hovis
Reply to  Riez
3 years ago

How exactly was it catastrophic?

Reply to  Mitch Hovis
3 years ago

The realistic expectations were:
Hosszu to double in IM + silver in 200 back
Cseh gold in 200 fly and a solo silver in 100
Gyurta gold in 200 breast
Kapas silver in 800 free
David Verraszto bronze in 400 IM
That would have made #2 by 4-3-1
Posotive surprise: no one expected that fantastic 3 runs from Kenderesi with a dodgy leg

Reply to  Riez
3 years ago

Gyurta gold in the 200 breast in Rio? Who thought that?
Last year he was in awful shape since day 1 (and to be fair, he did not break 2.08 since 2013 so…)

Reply to  Emanuele
3 years ago

Yes. What a wild guess it would have been to predict that the defending champion would win?! Just crazy!!!

Reply to  Whatever
3 years ago

I guess with the same logic you also could have said that Agnel winning the 200 free, Van der Burgh winning the 100 breast, Franklin winning the 100/200 back, Vollmer winning the 100 fly or Ye Shiwen winning the 200/400 IM wouldnt have been surprising?

Just some things to think about:
There is swimming outside of the olympics
Some people become older and therefore arent as good as they used to be …
Why exactly is someone who was the best in one event 4 years ago (at the last olympics) more likely to win than someone who was the best in this event 1 year ago (at the last world championships)?

I think you have to… Read more »

Reply to  Riez
3 years ago

Gyurta (200 breast), Kapas (400 free), Cseh (200 fly), Verraszto (400 IM) each left a medal in Rio. It’s difficult to predict the color in today’s swimming though…

Reply to  Riez
3 years ago

Thats not the swimmers problem or that of your federation, your expectations were just completely ridiculous.
Double gold for Hosszu: Yes, had to be expected
Silver in 200 back: Yes, not unrealistic
Gold for Cseh in the 200 fly: Why? What about Phelps and Le Clos?
Silver for Cseh in the 100 fly: Yes, but what difference does it make whether he wins it alone or not?
Gold for Gyurta in the 200 breast: Daniel Gyurta? Didnt you follow swimming in 2016? Even him making the final would have been a surprise.
Silver for Kapas in the 800 free: Not unrealistic, but what about Van Rouwendaal, Carlin, Friis, Ashwood and Boyle? Why exactly did… Read more »

Reply to  Riez
3 years ago

Please look around before you write about the new generation. Your comment is a joke.

3 years ago

Okay then I expect mr 3rd in the world but sick to go a 1:51

3 years ago

Is Hosszu out of shape? Her times were not up to her usual standard. How many events she is trying to swim? It seems this could backfire her and she might end up not making any event.

Reply to  ADSF
3 years ago

She is training. The federation reserve various spot for its best athletes despite the times.
BTW I don’t think they have the two athletes limit in the heats. I remember last year european championship with 3 GB 200m breastroker.

Reply to  Emanuele
3 years ago

At the euroean championship any country can list up to 4 swimmer in the heats of every event, but only 2 can qualify for semi’s and finals. At world’s and olympics each country can list only 2 and if both of them met the A qualifying standarts.

Reply to  Emanuele
3 years ago

It is probably a different approach to training has been undertaken by Hosszu this year.
Hasn’t she trained during Olympic year? But her times in April last year was much stronger at EVERYTHING she swam compare to what we see now.
This may suggest that what we are up to see in Budapest will be completely different to what has been shown in Rio. The question is which way different.

Reply to  Prickle
3 years ago

On the surface, she seems like taking different approach this year.
However, she’s still swimming as many events as possible in one meet. While the results are starkly different.

Is it from different training approach, or is it because her body is no longer able to perform those crazy swims, quantity and quality wise, as she has done in the past.

We’ll see.

Reply to  NYJOHN
3 years ago

She just found the next gear. Yesterday she started the day with moving a big amount of heavy weight, then swam in all events starting with an 1500 free. Today she collected a gold in 200IM with a world best time this year. Depends on the amount of weights she’s moving before her races.

Reply to  Prickle
3 years ago

There was European Championship before OG, and it is/was always important for Hungary. This year there’s nothing. Cseh, Kenderesi, Verraszto, Hosszu, Kapas… etc. They are protected because the times from 01.03.2016 are good for qualifying.

Reply to  ADSF
3 years ago

This year in Hungary the best 2 times qualifies from 1 March 2006 till and of this LC championship (if the 2 best times are level A).
Non filled spots (lack of an A level time) are still open for a race till the end of the official qualification period (qualification always based on times in Hungary, never places in a given race).
That’s why some swimmers with a ‘sure’ time from last year came for the championship from training. (Examples Hosszú, Kapás, Cseh)

Reply to  ADSF
3 years ago

Don’t buy that sleeping pill. In Budapest we have a good chance to see three ladies each grabbing four individual golds. Hosszu just needs to do a bit more maths on her adverse schedule.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of 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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