Pair Of World Records Highlights Final Night Of Budapest World Cup


The final session of the 2018 FINA World Cup stop in Budapest proved to be the fastest of the meet as records tumbled by the wayside with some incredible performances. The night featured two world records, two #2 swims of all-time, and some near misses on national records.

In terms of world records, we saw 38-year-old Nicholas Santos crack a nine-year-old mark in the men’s 50 fly, as he went 21.75 to get under Steffen Deibler‘s suited 2009 record of 21.80. He joins Deibler, Roland Schoeman and Chad Le Clos as the only men to have ever broken 22 seconds. You can read more about the record here.

Le Clos, who lost to Santos by .01 in Eindhoven, was over three-tenths back for 2nd this time in 22.11, and Japan’s Kosuke Matsui wasn’t too far off the Asian Record for 3rd in 22.62. The race as a whole was a fast one with all eight finalists sub-23.

A few events later we saw another record go by the wayside as Alia Atkinson of Jamaica lowered her own 50 breaststroke record in a time of 28.56, improving her previous mark of 28.64 from 2016. She has now been under 29 seconds on eight separate occasions, a feat only accomplished 14 times in history. You can read more about that record here.

Yuliya Efimova was the runner-up to Atkinson for the second straight night in 29.22, and American Molly Hannis (29.51) and Australian Emily Seebohm (29.96) were also under 30 seconds.

The other two standout swims came early on in the session, as Wang Jianjiahe of China came within a tenth of the 800 free world record in the second event of the night as she blasted a 7:59.44. That shattered her own junior world and Asian Records set in Eindhoven (8:03.86), and narrowly missed Mireia Belmonte‘s world record of 7:59.34. The 16-year-old Wang broke Belmonte’s 400 free record on the opening night of competition.

Just like in Eindhoven, Leah Smith (8:16.25) and Anna Egorova (8:22.24) took 2nd and 3rd, with Belmonte taking 5th in 8:24.58.

In the very next race Kelsi Dahlia exploded for a new American and World Cup Record in the women’s 100 fly, recording the 2nd-fastest swim in history with a 54.84. She came back on world record holder Sarah Sjostrom on the second 50 for the win to crush her previous AR of 55.21 set in Eindhoven. She took out Sjostrom’s World Cup Record of 54.91, also set in Eindhoven, and now owns the #2 swim ever behind Sjostrom’s 54.61 done in 2014.

Zhang Yufei of China took 3rd in 56.27.


  • Daiya Seto won the men’s 400 IM in 4:01.16 over Hungarian David Verraszto (4:03.05), building a lead on the front half before holding him even the rest of the way. The two also went 1-2 in Eindhoven, where Seto broke the World Cup Record in 3:57.25.
  • Emily Seebohm finished off a very impressive backstroke triple with a big win in the 200, sneaking under two minutes in 1:59.94 to come within less than half a second of her Commonwealth Record (1:59.49). Kathleen Baker was a little bit faster than her winning time in Eindhoven for 2nd in 2:00.69, six-tenths off of Missy Franklin‘s American Record (2:00.03), and Katinka Hosszu was a close 3rd in 2:01.00.
  • Mitch Larkin picked up his third win of the meet in the men’s 100 back, clocking 49.96 to get by Michael Andrew (50.36) and Ryosuke Irie (50.46).
  • It was a Russian clash in the men’s 200 breaststroke, as Kirill Prigoda used his early speed to hold off reigning LC World Champion Anton Chupkov in 2:01.58 to Chupkov’s 2:01.86. Prigoda, who made the difference on the opening 50 where he out-split Chupkov by close to a second in 27.37, was just over four-tenths off his National Record of 2:01.11. American Nic Fink placed 3rd in 2:03.37.
  • Ranomi Kromowidjojo used her early speed to pick up her third victory over Sarah Sjostrom for the meet in the women’s 100 freestyle, coming in at 51.01 to fall just .06 shy of her Dutch National Record. Sjostrom was 2nd for the fifth time this meet in 51.22, and Femke Heemskerk (51.74) was 3rd. Sjostrom won in Eindhoven in 51.21.
  • Blake Pieroni repeated as the winner in the men’s 200 freestyle, using a monster third 50 of 25.95 to defeat Chad Le Clos in 1:42.00. Le Clos was out like a rocket, flipping with splits of 22.74 and 48.84 on the front half, but lost all of his lead to the American on the third length. Sprint specialist Vlad Morozov showed some impressive range by taking 3rd in 1:43.01.
  • Hosszu did what she had to do to hold off Melanie Margalis for the win in the women’s 200 IM, using superior fly and back splits to take her by a half second, 2:04.13 to 2:04.65. Seebohm finished off her busy session with a 3rd place finish in 2:06.37.
  • The Netherlands continued their run in the relays with another title in the mixed 4×50 medley, with Jesse Puts (24.17), Arno Kamminga (26.39), Kromowidjojo (24.96) and Heemskerk (23.16) doing just enough to hold off the Americans in 1:38.68. The American quarter of Andrew (23.39), Hannis (29.37), Dahlia (24.86) and Pieroni (21.30) nearly ran them down, but were just over two-tenths shy at the wall in 1:38.92. Russia was 3rd in 1:39.90.

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2 years ago

Just one gold medal for Sarah Sjostrom and where … in 200 free. Unbelievable. If she isn’t unhealthy at this meet then it is a lack of concentration in the situation of raising level of competition. This meet is definitely different from Kazan/Doha.
Money talks.

Reply to  Yozhik
2 years ago

I don’t think Sarah misjudged her shape/concentration. She is not tapered for the world cup and probably will do only for Worlds. Kelsi did the second best time ever, and Sarah still did a 54!

Reply to  DDias
2 years ago

This meet was indeed interesting to follow. It wasn’t a meet of a few swimmers who came here just to cash the check. So many results that were not predicted for sure. Even Hosszu in her traditional events in her beloved SCM format in her home pool was strongly contested. I hope that the competition at Asian stops will be of same intensity, but it most likely won’t happen. But if it will then Sarah’s win of the Cup isn’t guaranteed any more should she swim at the same level.

SUM Ting Wong
Reply to  Yozhik
2 years ago

She may haved done an endurance bloc of training between stops whereas the others did speed . So there is the 200.

Reply to  Yozhik
2 years ago

She said after that Kelsi killed in the underwaters and that she had a lot of work to do… She should study Dressel..

samuel huntington
2 years ago

for me, most surprising is Morozov’s 200 free – impressive time

most impressive is Santos – wow

Coach Mike 1952
2 years ago

Congratulations to all the swimmers in Budapest – some really fine swimming there! Any videos of these swims coming?

Reply to  Coach Mike 1952
2 years ago

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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