Etiene Medeiros took the silver medal behind China’s Yuanhui Fu in the finals of the women’s 50m backstroke this evening at the 2015 FINA World Aquatic Championships, but her race represented a lot more than a single medal.
Medeiros’s time of 27.26 broke a trio of records that already belonged to her: the Americas (fastest time in North or South America), South American, and Brazilian records in this event. Her previous best time was a 27.37, which she swam at the Brazilian Open in December 2014.
Perhaps even more notably, Medeiros’s victory is the first time that a Brazilian woman has won a long course world championships medal, although Brazil’s men have had plenty of success over the past decade, most notably in world record holder César Cielo, who had to drop out of the meet earlier this week due to shoulder issues.
Mederios is currently the world record holder in the short course version of the 50 back, having set that mark with the gold medal she won in the 2014 Short Course World Championships in Doha this past December.
She also holds Brazil’s record in both the short course and long course versions of the 100 backstroke, but she failed to make it out of preliminaries earlier this week in Kazan. She will have one more chance at medaling this week when she competes in the 50 free.