Nao Horomura Rattles Milak’s 200 Fly WJR In 1:53.90 At WUGS


Japan’s Nao Horomura had an incredible performance in the men’s 200 fly final on day 4 of the 2017 World University Games in Taipei.

Facing off against an experienced field, including countryman Daiya Seto who won bronze in this event at the World Championships last month, Horomura didn’t flinch as he took over the lead on the second 50 and never looked back.

Out in 54.31, he held it together on the back half with splits of 29.5 and 30.0 to post a time of 1:53.90, breaking the Universiade meet record (1:54.30) by four tenths and narrowly missing Kristof Milak‘s junior world record of 1:53.79.

Back in April, Horomura clocked a 1:55.37 which would’ve been a new junior record had China’s Li Zhuhao not lowered his previous mark of 1:55.52 down to 1:55.29 just a few days prior. Milak annihilated that record at the European Junior Championships, out like a rocket in 53.24 before holding on to win gold.

Prior to Milak’s swim, the fastest ever swim from someone 18-and-under was from none other than Michael Phelps, as he went 1:53.93 in the semi-finals of the 2003 World Championships in Barcelona. Noromura finds himself under that mark now as well, putting him on track to be one of the world’s best butterflyers for years to come.

Seto gained a bit of ground on Horomura on the third 50, but fell off the pace coming home to finish over a second back in 1:55.09 for silver.

Hungarian Bence Biczo won the bronze in 1:56.16, continuing the country’s incredible recent showing of depth in the event. In the last 12 months they’ve had four different swimmers win the Olympic bronze medal, the World Championship silver medal, break the junior world record, and win bronze at the World University Games. Milak wasn’t even able to swim this event at Worlds, as Laszlo Cseh and Tamas Kenderesi took precedence. Given Milak’s incredible improvement in the 100m event in Budapest (he went 50.62 for a new WJR and the silver), it would’ve been very interesting to see what he could’ve done at Worlds. We’ll get the opportunity to see what he can do this week, as Milak will contest the event at World Juniors in Indianapolis which are underway today.

In the all-time ranks, Horomura now sits 11th all-time and third all-time among Japanese men, trailing Olympic medalists Takeshi Matsuda (1:52.97) and Masato Sakai (1:53.40). He and Sakai (22) will carry on Japan’s tradition of excellence in this event, as they’ve won an Olympic medal at four consecutive Games.

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
IMs for days
6 years ago

Comparison time!
Milak split 24.69/53.24(28.55)/1:22.71(29.47)/1:53.79(31.08)
Horomura split 25.71/54.31(28.60)/1:23.89(29.58)/1:53.90(30.01)
The futurw of the butterfly events looks great, Dressel, Guy, Milak, Kenderesi, Sakai, Horomura, etc, so many young guys coming up in this stroke.

Reply to  IMs for days
6 years ago

Let’s wait till the end of Indianapolis. I think Milak will swim PB (and new WJR). (He swam PB as the 1st boy in the winner 4×100 free relay. His SB was 50.09 at the Hungarian Nationals, and at the WJs swam 49.08.) OTW there are/will be good races in all the events of the fly. Other names have to be mentioned: (50-200): Santos, Proud, Govorov, Schooling, Guy, Zhuhao, Cseh, LeClos, Seto, Conger Clark, Kalisz etc. Good for us.

Reply to  IMs for days
6 years ago

I wonder if 100 fly has replaced 50 free as the “main event” after 100 free

6 years ago

Incredible performance.

6 years ago

That might be the best swim of the meet. He would have made the podium with that time in Budapest.

Japan has more depth than USA in the 200 fly.

Harry Dresden
Reply to  marklewis
6 years ago

Hyperbole alert

Reply to  Harry Dresden
6 years ago

why the downvotes? japan has 3 good 200 flyers whereas the US has more that are competitive on on the international stage.

Harry Dresden
Reply to  Dudeman
6 years ago

I know right? Do y’all know what the definition of depth is?

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 …

Read More »