Rikako Ikee Inches Towards 25.0 Barrier with Asian Record 25.11 50 Fly

2018 MARE NOSTRUM TOUR, CANET-EN-ROUSSILLON

Racing on night 2 of the Canet-en-Roussillon stop of the 2018 Mare Nostrum tour, Japanese teen phenom Rikako Ikee slammed down a statement swim in the 50 fly. Finishing nearly a full second ahead of 2nd place Kimberly Buys of Belgium, Ikee hit the wall at 25.11, breaking her old Asian record of 25.25.

In terms of international implications, Ikee is nearing sub-25 territory, a venture that’s only ever been made by Sweden’s Sarah Sjöström. After several years of Sjöström reigning as the untouchable butterfly queen, Ikee’s progressions are starting to bring the Swede a bit more down to earth — or, maybe it’s the other way around, and Ikee is rising to her lofty standards.

Sjöström’s record is still a ways away at 24.43, though she hasn’t been able to touch that since she swam it in 2014. With Ikee’s overall improvements across all of her top events this year, though, the teenager is looking more and more like a serious threat to Sjöström and the world for the coming years.

Currently, Ikee’s 25.11 puts her just four hundredths behind Sjöström’s world-leading 25.07 from January.

2017-2018 LCM WOMEN 50 FLY

2Rikako
IKEE
JPN25.1106/10
3Cate
CAMPBELL
AUS25.4703/01
4Madeline
GROVES
AUS25.5404/07
5Melanie
HENIQUE
FRA25.6304/06
View Top 26»

Ikee is now inside of the top 5 in history in this race.

WOMEN’S 50 FLY ALL-TIME TOP PERFORMERS

  1. Sarah Sjöström (SWE) – 24.43 (2014)
  2. Therese Alshammar (SWE) – 25.07 (2009)
  3. Rikako Ikee (JPN) – 25.11 (2018)
  4. Fran Halsall (GBR) – 25.20 (2014)
  5. Jeanette Ottesen (DEN) – 25.24 (2013)

Ikee is also significantly younger than any of these women were when they went these times. Sjöström was 20, Alshammar was 31, Halsall was 24, and Ottesen was 25.

This weekend in Canet, Ikee knocked off the red-hot Canadian teen Taylor Ruck to win the 100 free (53.10) to just miss her Asian record by .07, won the 100 fly (57.47), and placed third in the 50 free (24.80).

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samuel huntington

wow, this is serious speed.

Boknows34

Ikee moves to third all-time and the fastest ever by a non-Swede as Alshammar is 2nd with 25.07.

Yozhik

The situation is pretty much like in Ledecky’s case. The records are far away and are out of reach but should Sjostrom lose concentration a little bit the young challengers are right here.

Liam

Yeah, I understand that people think it’s a good time because Sarah Sjöström is the only swimmer that has gone under 25 seconds but the records are quite far away, and what we have seen Sarah doesn’t seem to slow down. I mean look at her swim last year in Budapest. They were pretty amazing!

ERVINFORTHEWIN

but that was last year , 10 months ago and Ikee is gaining ground …..

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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