Rikako Ikee Reaps Gold On Night 1 Of Japan Student Swimming C’ships


Several Olympians will be in the water this week to contest the 97th Japan Student Swimming Championships in Tokyo, Japan. Among them is 21-year-old leukemia survivor Rikako Ikee, with the two-time Olympian diving in here on night 1 at the Tatsumi International Swimming Center.

Solely the men’s and women’s 50m freestyle event comprised the first finals session, with Ikee and Masahiro Kawane coming away with the splash n’ dash victories.

Ikee posted a time of 25.02 to lead a trio of Nihon Univesity athletes, with Mayuka Yamamoto and Sachi Mochida placing 2nd and 3rd in times of 25.16 and 25.22, respectively.

Ikee’s personal best since returning to competition after having spent most of 2019 in the hospital came in the form of her 24.84 at the Olympic Trials in April. She went on to represent Japan in just relays at the 2020 Olympic Games to preserve her strength but has eyes toward Paris 2024.

As for Kawane, the Chuo University student-athlete established himself as the top swimmer in the men’s 50 free climbing atop the podium in a time of 22.25. For perspective, Kawane was rendered 5th at this year’s Olympic Trials in this event, registering a time of 22.12.

Action resumes tomorrow and runs through Sunday.

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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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