Meilutyte Hits 29.44 50 Breast Lithuanian Record, #4 Swim In History


On the sixth day of racing at the 2022 European Championships, Ruta Meilutyte delivered a Lithuanian record-breaking swim of 29.44 to win the semi-finals round of racing. Meilutyte downed her own national record in the event, which previously stood at a 29.48 from the 2013 World Championships.

In addition to recording a new personal best in the semi-finals, Meilutyte replaced her own 29.48 as the 4th-fastest swim in history. When she hit that time in 2013 it was a new world record in the event, broken by Lilly King in 2017 (29.40) and then Benedetta Pilato in 2021 (29.30).

All-time Women’s 50 Breaststroke Rankings

  1. Benedetta Pilato (ITA) – 29.30 (2021)
  2. Benedetta Pilato (ITA) – 29.35 (2021)
  3. Lilly King (USA) – 29.40 (2017)
  4. Ruta Meilutyte (LTU) – 29.44 (2022)
  5. Ruta Meilutyte (LTU) – 29.48 (2013)
  6. Benedetta Pilato (ITA) – 29.50 (2021)
  7. Yuliya Efimova (RUS) – 29.52 (2013)
  8. Yuliya Efimova (RUS) – 29.57 (2017)

Meilutyte will enter the final in first place tomorrow but will be up against world record-holder Benedetta Pilato who placed second in semis with a 29.85. Meilutyte and Pilato were both on the 100 breaststroke podium earlier this week when Pilato took gold in a 1:05.97 while Meilutyte snagged bronze (1:06.50) with Lisa Angiolini taking silver (1:06.34).

Meilutyte, who won 100 breaststroke Olympic gold in 2012, recently made a comeback to the sport after retiring following her 2019 doping suspension. She raced at the 2022 World Championships as her first major international meet in years, landing on the podium in the 50 breaststroke and 100 breaststroke, taking gold and bronze, respectively.

Ruta recently spoke to SwimSwam about her comeback, suspension, and much more. Listen to her podcast here.

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Katya Zamolodchikova
1 month ago

literal goat, incredible

1 month ago

Wow. 9 years later. That’s awesome

1 month ago


Pavid Dopovici
1 month ago

I’ve missed Meilutyte good ol’ reaction time. What a legend

Go Kamminga Go
Reply to  Pavid Dopovici
1 month ago

Me too! Her RT and start is something else.

a swim in a pond in the rain
1 month ago

fyi that meilutyte’s doping suspension was for missed tests, as opposed to evidence that she was actually doping

Reply to  a swim in a pond in the rain
1 month ago

That is very true. There is no evidence of doping. She missed 3 doping tests and then immediately retired from international competition. Evidence of doping can only be gathered if the athlete actually submits to testing. It’s seems very remarkable though how she is able to swim the 4th fastest all -time 50 breast without international competition and coming out of retirement! I think she is just extremely talented!

Reply to  a swim in a pond in the rain
1 month ago

she actually talks about that in length during this podcast: