Men’s 100 Free Final At Euros To Feature Incredible Youth Movement


Wednesday’s final of the men’s 100 freestyle at the 2021 European Championships projects to be a tantalizing race, with Alessandro MiressiAndrei Minakov and Kliment Kolesnikov all popping off 47-second swims in the semi-finals.

However, as first pointed out by Alex Pussieldi of Brazilian website Best Swimming, the event will also feature a vast youth movement.

The average age of the field – only factoring in the swimmers’ ages as of the day of the race – is exactly 20 years old, close to two years under the average from the 2018 final (21.75).

The young field is highlighted by Romanian standout David Popovici, just 16, who has lowered his country’s National Record in both the prelims (48.30) and semis (48.28).

Minakov only recently turned 19 in March, while Kolesnikov and Switzerland’s Roman Mityukov (also a National Record setter in the event) are 20, turning 21 later this year.

Miressi, who has broken his Italian Record twice in the event this week – including a leading 47.53 in the semis – is the oldest swimmer in the field at 22 (turning 23 in October).

The average age was brought down a bit due to the absence of Duncan Scott – still young in the sport in his own right – who opted not to race despite being among the gold medal favorites. Scott turned 24 less than two weeks ago.

In 2018, Miressi won gold when he was just 19, with Scott claiming silver at 21. Unlike this year, there were a few veterans in that field, including bronze medalist Mehdy Metella (26 at the time) and fifth-place finisher Luca Dotto (28 at the time).

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About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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