Matsumoto Rocks 1:44.65 Japanese Record In 200 Freestyle

2021 JAPAN SWIM (OLYMPIC TRIALS)

World Championships silver medalist Katsuhiro (Katsuo) Matsumoto just became the first man from Japan to ever get under the 1:45 threshold in the 200m freestyle.

While competing on day 3 of the 2021 Japan Swim, the sole Olympic-qualifying opportunity for Japanese swimmers, Matsumoto fired off a massive effort of 1:44.65, beating the stacked field by over 3 seconds en route to cracking his own national record.

Matsumoto charged off the blocks in an opening 100m of 50.42 before sealing the deal with a 54.23 back half. In doing so, the 24-year-old easily overtook his own previous Japanese standard of 1:45.13, a mark he established just this past January. Splits for that earlier swim included 51.18/53.95.

Matsumoto now ranks as the 9th fastest performer ever worldwide in this men’s 200m free event, joining an exclusive sub-1:45 club that contains the likes of American Michael Phelps and Frenchman Yannick Agnel.

Matsumoto’s result also booked his ticket to Tokyo for the postponed Olympic Games. His new lifetime best easily cleared the 1:45.76 required by the Japanese Swimming Federation (JASF) to qualify for the home-based Games, with Matsumoto representing the only man to do so. Teenager Konosuke Yanagimotojust 17 years of age, produced a runner-up effort of 1:47.45, while former national record holder in this event, Kosuke Hagino, rounded out the top 3 in 1:47.72.

Additionally, the federation set a minimum threshold of 7:08.31 for the men’s 800m free relay. The aforementioned top 3 finishers, along with 4th placed Takahashi Kotaro‘s 1:47.93 collectively comes in at 7:07.75, good enough to qualify.

Top Men LCM 200 Free Performers All-Time

  1. Paul Biedermann (GER) – 1:42.00, 2009
  2. Michael Phelps (USA) – 1:42.96, 2008
  3. Yannick Agnel (FRA) – 1:43.14, 2012
  4. Danila Izotov (RUS) – 1:43.90, 2009
  5. Ian Thorpe (AUS) – 1:44.06, 2001
  6. Danas Rapsys (LTU) – 1:44.38, 2019
  7. Sun Yang (CHN) – 1:44.39, 2017
  8. Ryan Lochte (USA) – 1:44.44, 2011
  9. Katsuhiro Matsumoto (JPN) – 1:44.65, 2021
  10. Park Tae Hwan (KOR) – 1:44.80, 2010

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PFA
1 year ago

Easily the #1 time in the world this year by a quite a bit.

Agnel is the best 200 freestyler of all time
1 year ago

Yannick Agnel’s 1:43.1 at just 20 years old, is next level.

Mr Piano
1 year ago

I really hope he wins, it would be great to see Japan win multiple events on home soil

AnEn
Reply to  Mr Piano
1 year ago

Would be bad for the sport if someone like him would win a medal.
https://swimswam.com/updated-with-comment-matsumoto-gets-fina-doping-warning/

KoiFish
Reply to  AnEn
1 year ago

From the article you linked: “the infringing substance was unintentionally ingested in meals, thus rendering Matsumoto not in violation of anti-doping rules.”

Agnel is the best 200 freestyler of all time
1 year ago

Yannick Agnel’s 1:43.1 at just 20 years old, is next level.

Ol' Longhorn
1 year ago

Thorpy still a top 5 20 years later.

Chalmers > Dressel
1 year ago

huge swim! does anyone have the race video?

Troyy
1 year ago

Article at State of Swimming says Matsumoto is aiming for a 1:43 swim at Tokyo.

Mr Piano
Reply to  Troyy
1 year ago

Pog

Pvdh
Reply to  Troyy
1 year ago

He should also aim to time his cycle right so he doesn’t get caught doping.

Luigi
1 year ago

I wish to see the same ranking in textile suits only

Luigi
Reply to  Troyy
1 year ago

Thanks Troyy

nuotofan
Reply to  Luigi
1 year ago

Sorry, but this distinction black/white among textile and not-textile suits in my opinion is absurd, because the 2020 textile suits are far more efficient than the 2007 for instance. The suits progress is continuing every year and the 2020 textile jammers are, perhaps, not so distant from the Speedo Lzr 50% poly suit (I reckon that the 2009 100% poly suits are still far ahead).

Last edited 1 year ago by nuotofan
Mr Piano
Reply to  nuotofan
1 year ago

I repeat this to death all the time. 2020 textile suits are light years ahead of 2007 suits. In my opinion they’re around as good as leggings from 2008, but can’t touch the 2009 suits at all, or the LZR full bodysuit

This isn’t to devalue current performances at all, but to slightly raise up ones from times prior. PVDH might have been going 47.5 or 47.4 in today’s suits

Last edited 1 year ago by Mr Piano
Luigi
Reply to  nuotofan
1 year ago

Then let’s just scrap the 2008-9 supersuits, I guess

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
Reply to  Luigi
1 year ago

Interestingly enough, it’s actually the same guys, just in a slightly different order: Agnel on top, Biedermann, Izotov squeezing into the top 10 with 1:44.8s, PVDH still out 🙁

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Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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