Kimberly Buys moved into the dominant position at the 2014 Belgian Short Course Open Championships with three more gold medals. While she couldn’t match Fannie Lecluyse’s National Record from Saturday, Buys came very close in two events on the day.
Her day began with a 54.27 victory in the women’s 100 freestyle, where she was a 54.26. That time is only .04 seconds slower than the 2008 National Record held by Annelies de Mare.
While Buys is inching toward the back-half of her career at 25, the young 17-year old Juliette Casini is coming up to take her spot at the top of the Belgian sprint group.
Buys’ next victory was in the 100 backstroke with a 1:00.88. She wasn’t close to the National Record there, which is actually hers in 58.15. Given how fast she was everywhere else on Sunday evening, that’s a surprise, and perhaps a calculated decision. Another 17-year old, Hanne Calleeuw, was 2nd in 1:01.70.
Buys finished her day with a 26.18 in the 50 fly, just three-tenths of a second from her own National Record. Again, another 1997-born swimmer Sara Vanleynseele was 2nd in 27.60. If those three 17-year olds continue in their training and build themselves together as a “class,” Belgium could be in store for some big moves for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
The other noteworthy swim on the day is a 21.52 from Francois Heersbrandt to win the men’s 50 free. That just missed the National Record of 21.50, but was Heersbrandt’s first best time in short course in this event since 2011. After a very strong summer in long course, he might be a dark horse contender to make a podium at Short Course Worlds in either the sprint freestyle or sprint butterfly events.