2021 LEN EUROPEAN AQUATICS CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Swimming: Monday, May 17th – Sunday, May 23rd, 2021
- Budapest, Hungary
- Prelims at 10:00 am local/Finals at 6:00 pm local
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23-year old Luke Greenbank took almost a full second off his own British Record in the 200 backstroke in prelims on Friday.
Greenbank dominated his heat, heat 4, of the event and took the top seed overall with a 1:54.67. That breaks his own British Record of 1:55.34 done at the Britsih Swimming Invitation meet in March.
|New Record||Old Record|
When Greenbank swam his 1:55 in March, he broke a record set 11 years ago by James Goddard at 1:55.58.
Greenbank continues to show big drops in the 200 backstroke – after no drops from a 1:56.89 in 2015 as a 17-year old until 2019, he’s now improved over 2 seconds in the last 2 years. His swim now ranks him 4th in the world this season. He also won a bronze medal in the event at the 2019 World Championships.
Greenbank’s swim also positions him as the 13th-best performer globally in the history of the event: one spot ahead of Arkady Vyatchanin (1:54.75) and one spot behind Michael Phelps (1:54.65), who was better known as a butterflier and IMer but had plenty of backstroke ability as well.
While he was well ahead of the field in prelims, Greenbank still may need another gear to win gold on Saturday, however: the 2nd qualifier through to the semi-final was the European Record holder Evgeny Rylov of Russia in 1:55.74.
Still, the British Swimming faithful will focus more on the 53.34 he swam in the 100 backstroke final earlier in the meet: a personal best but not a British Record. With Adam Peaty, James Guy, and Duncan Scott closing the medley relay, Greenbank’s backstroke is really the weakest leg for the British men as they seek Olympic gold in the medley relay. But as Greenbank creeps closer-and-closer to the expected 52-lows or 51-highs of the likes of Ryan Murphy, Kliment Kolesnikov, Evgeny Rylov, and Xu Jiayu, that weakness becomes stronger-and-stronger, and a British victory becomes more-and-more likely.