Ever-improving Japanese swimmer Rikako Ikee impressed yet again, this time winning the women’s 100m butterfly race at the 2015 World Cup in Tokyo in a time of 57.56. That not only crushes her mark of 58.28 that won her the 2015 World Junior Championship title, but it also wiped out the old Japanese National Record of 57.77 set by Yuka Kato in 2012. Prior to today, the 58.28 outing signified a lifetime best for teenager Ikee.
With her 57.56 performance, Ikee threw down the year’s 8th-fastest time so far this year….at just 15 years old. With her one race today, she rocketed from 28th in the world rankings, to now just sitting behind the world’s biggest guns, such as Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom, Denmark’s Jeanette Ottesen and America’s Kelsi Worrell.
One note to keep in mind is that FINA announced Ikee’s Tokyo performance as a new World Junior Record; however, China’s Xinyi Chen actually still holds that distinction with the 56.61 she registered at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon.
The Japanese 50m butterfly record stands at 25.95 at the moment, but Ikee enters the World Cup Tokyo stop already having a 26.28 under her belt. It’s fair to say, with Ikee’s time-hacking history, that the 50m butterfly Japanese National Record is also now on notice.