Rapsys Rocks Another 3:43 4Free While Morozov Hits 21.50 On Jinan Day 1


  • Thursday, August 8th – Sunday, August 10th
  • Natatorium of the Jinan Olympic Sport Centre, Jingshi Donglu, Lixia District, Jinan, China
  • LCM
  • Heats at 9am local (9pm night before EDT)/Finals at 8pm local (8am EDT)
  • SwimSwam Preview
  • Entries
  • Results

We’re entering stop #2 within the first cluster of the 2019 FINA World Cup Series, with elite swimmers racing in Jinan, China located in the Lixia District of the Asian nation. Per our preview, as expected, there is a large Chinese contingent racing this weekend, while Japan’s roster is non-existent this time around.

Through stop #1, which took place just days ago in Tokyo, Japan, last year’s World Cup Champion Vladimir Morozov of Russia holds the top spot among the men’s FINA point standings with 48, while America’s Andrew Wilson and Japan’s Yasuhiro Koseki aren’t too far behind, tied for runner-up through just 1 stop with 42 points each.

As for the women, Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu leads the pack with 54 points out of Tokyo, carrying a comfortable lead over 2nd place Cate Campbell of Australia and her teammate, current 3rd place swimmer Emily Seebohm. C1 holds 45 points, while Seebohm has 36.

America’s Erica Sullivan got on the board here quickly to kick-off day 1 finals in Jinan, producing a new personal best in the women’s 400m free for gold. In Tokyo, Sullivan clocked a time of 4:10.44 to land off the podium, but tonight the 18-year-old got it done in a mark of 4:08.70, the only sub-4:10 time of the field. That performance overwrites her previous career-fastest of 4:09.43, marking just the 3rd time ever in her career she’s been under 4:10.

Runner-up this evening went to Bi Wenxin of China in 4:10.23, while Dong Jie snagged bronze in a time of 4:11.32. Last week’s winner in Tokyo, Kiah Melverton of Australia, was not racing tonight.

For Sullivan, the Sandpiper’s time now checks her in as the 23rd fastest American 17-18-year-old female performer ever, moving up from 29 prior to tonight’s performance.

Danas Rapsys made the men’s 400m free an electric final as well, with the 24-year-old hitting the wall in a massive mark of 3:43.91, a just over half a second off of his own Lithuanian National Record.

Splitting 53.66/57.36/57.27/55.62, Rapsys’ final split included his closing in a remarkable 27.03 to check-in with a new World Cup Record. His time of 3:43.91 tonight takes over his own previous World Cup standard of 3:45.57 notched just last week in Tokyo.

For perspective, Rapsys’ Lithuanian National Record stands at the 3:43.36 he produced at the FINA World Champions Series in Budapest this past May, while he finished in 4th place at this year’s World Championships in Gwangju, Korea in a time of 3:43.50, so tonight’s race was right up there among the man’s best-ever performances.

Touching the wall well back for silver tonight was China’s Ji Xinjie, who produced 3:49.87 for silver, while Aussie Thomas Fraser-Holmes collected bronze in 3:54.20.

Another World Cup Record went down during night 1 finals, this time courtesy of a host nation swimmer in Liu Xiang. In the 50m back, the reigning Asian Games champion clocked a winning time of 27.35 to beat out the old WC Record of 27.49 set by Aussie Emily Seebohm back in 2015. Liu’s personal best also sits as the current World Record in the 26.98 she logged in Jakarta last year to take the Asian Games title.

Runner-up was another Chinese swimmer in Chen Jie and her time of 27.88, while Seebohm settled for bronze in 27.99, but still faster than the 28.03 the Aussie registered last week for the win in Tokyo.

Speaking of Aussies, Mitch Larkin snared his 2nd consecutive 200m back victory with his podium-topping outing of 1:56.39 tonight. That was enough to hold off his own teammate from down under, Tristan Hollard, who punched the clock in 1:57.94.

Tonight represents just the 2nd time the Southport swimmer Hollard has been under the 1:58-threshold, with his lifetime best resting at the 1:57.17 he put up at the Australian National Championships this past April.

China’s National Champion, Xu Jiayu, touched in a modest time of 1:59.59, well off his season-best of 1:55.24 he notched at the FINA Champions Seris this past April.

Xu surprisingly dropped out of this event at the World Championships in order for China to focus on the men’s 4x200m freestyle relay. The relay notched a time of 7:04.74 to fall well short of the podium in 6th, but their time in Gwangju produced a new National Record, as well as qualified them for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Hungary’s Sebastian Sabo, the newest member of the federation after having switched from Serbian representation, topped the men’s 100m fly podium tonight in a near-personal best. The 23-year-old stopped the clock tonight in a time of 51.45 to fall just short of his lifetime best of 51.34 from this spring’s Hungarian National Championships. Sabo was 51.67 last week and 51.95 during today’s heats, so collecting sub-52 second 100 fly times is his new hobby.

Aussie Grant Irvine earned silver tonight in 51.63, his fastest outing since earning bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

Italy’s Santo Condorelli produced a time of 52.00 for bronze, while America’s Michael Andrew finished off the podium in 4th with a time of 52.08. For Condorelli, that’s his fastest mark since becoming an Italian federation swimmer, beating the 52.06 he logged at the Italian National Championships in April. Andrew’s time tonight was .06 faster than the 52.14 he produced in Tokyo.

The top 5 men in the 100m breaststroke final all dipped under the minute threshold, led by China’s National Record holder Yan Zibei. Yan hit the wall in 59.08 to hold an almost-half a second advantage over the runners-up represented by both Andrew Wilson of the U.S. and Wang Lizhuo of China. Both Wilson and Lizhuo touched in the same time of 59.56, while another host country swimmer, Qin Haiyang clocked 59.63 for 4th place.

Nicolo Martingenghi, World Junior Record holder from Italy, snagged a sub-minute effort in 59.67 for 5th.

Aussie Cate Campbell exacted revenge on Sweden’s Michelle Coleman after suffering a 50m freestyle defeat in Tokyo. Instead, it was C1 who landed on top of the women’s sprint field, touching in a quick 24.16 to demolish the 24.81 she logged last week in Tokyo. Coleman was slightly slower than her 24.66 gold medal swim from Tokyo, finishing in 24.74 tonight.

C1’s effort of 24.16 tonight fell just .05 outside of the 24.11 she put up in Gwangju that gave her the bronze, although her season-best rests at 24.00.

Holly Barratt made it a 1&3 Aussie finish with a mark of 24.91, tying the 2nd best time of her career and representing just her 3rd time ever under the 25-second barrier.

Russia’s Morozov, overall points leader through stop #1, crushed the men’s 50m free in the only sub-22 second outing of the entire field. Morozov hit a time of 21.50 to fall just .01 shy of his own World Cup Record of 21.45 he logged in Kazan last year. His time tonight even beat the 21.53 he put up in Gwangju that rendered the Rusian in 4th place in the men’s 50m free final.

Andrew took silver tonight in 22.16 after his 100m fly, while Yu Hexin of China collected bronze in 22.31. Sabo, straight off the men’s 100m fly as well, notched 22.37 for 4th place.

Additional Notes:

  • Hungary’s Iron Lady Hosszu won the women’s 200m fly in a time of 2:07.26, just slightly off the 2:07.10 she notched last week in Tokyo. Her closing 50 of 31.97 sealed the deal after having trailed teammate Zsuzsanna Jakabos through the race up until that point. Jakabos clocked a time of 2:07.75, beating her 2:08.86 from last week by over a second.
  • Vitalina Simonova took the women’s 200m breaststroke tonight in a time of 2:24.52, beating the field by 3 seconds. Her time here in Jinan lays waste to the 2:27.15 she swam last week in Tokyo that garnered the Russian 8th place overall. She holds a PB of 2:22.72 in this event from 2015.

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3 years ago

I’m really psyched about the ISL because it’ll just add on to the fun of the World Cup, I seriously find these people swimming fast year round way more hardcore than once a year. Keeps their name out there and their sponsors shown, maybe Andrews is just smarter long term. Maybe as a way to improve year round competition, FINA and ISL go half and half to find a 50k or so prize for the fastest time in each event (LCM/SCM) by Dec 31st each year. That way the worlds fastest swimmers can be rewarded and we’ll get to watch the December dash to take down times from champs that won but were far off the record to be crowned… Read more »

Reply to  Ragnar
3 years ago

Actually that idea sounds great. Give prizes (like 50k or something) to the fastest swimmer in the world in each event every year to try and get swimmers to go out and go for fast times. Sounds like a cool idea…

Speedy PG
Reply to  IM FAN
3 years ago

Yeah but for fastest in an event should win much, much more than 50k.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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