Romanchuk Becomes 4th Fastest Performer Of All-Time In Men’s 1500


Ukrainian Mykhailo Romanchuk chose not to enter either the 400 or 800 freestyle at the World Championships, putting his sole focus on the 1500. It turned out to be a great decision.

The 20-year-old shattered his national record in the prelims, taking the 14:50.33 mark from the 2016 European Championships all the way down to 14:44.11, making him the #1 seed heading into finals.

In the final he went toe-to-toe with defending champion and reigning Olympic gold medalist Gregorio Paltrinieri of Italy, pushing him the entire race. Paltrinieri began to pull away over the final 200m, and went onto take gold in 14:35.85. Romanchuk didn’t let him get too far away, closing in 27.86 to make up a second on the Italian and win the silver in 14:37.14, shattering his national record by another seven seconds.

Romanchuk’s swim makes him the 4th fastest performer in history, now trailing only Sun Yang, Paltrinieri and the great Grant Hackett. It was also the 9th fastest performance in history.

This drastic improvement is not a surprise from the Ukrainian, as he dropped some big times at the end of last year on the World Cup circuit in the short course pool, including a 14:15.49 which is one of the fastest swims in history.

Australian Mack Horton held on for the bronze in 14:47.70, and Romanchuk’s countryman Sergii Frolov finished 6th in 14:55.10 in the final which was made up of seven Europeans.

Fastest All-Time Performers – Men’s 1500 Freestyle

1 Sun Yang 14:31.02
2 Gregorio Paltrinieri 14:34.04
3 Grant Hackett 14:34.56
4 Mykhailo Romanchuk 14:37.14
5 Ous Mellouli 14:37.28
6 Connor Jaeger 14:39.48
7 Mack Horton 14:39.54
8 Ryan Cochrane 14:39.63
9 Gabriele Detti 14:40.86
10 Yuriy Prilukov 14:41.13

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Richard Sports Assassin Stevens

Forward Italia!! A great race!! Italy have what, a couple o golds……well done!


Look at the difference of the style between paltrinieri and romanchuk. Their contrast in the race was intriguing. Paltrinieri, high tempo, quick catch stroke with almost one beat kick. Romanchuk, long loping stroke mostly with 4 beat kick, similar to sun yang, kicking rhythm looks different tho. Horton, decent 2 beat kicker. I don’t know if she is trying something new, but Ledecky in the distance races applied one beat style much more dominantly than rio, even in the finals this time. Very interesting. She’s been 4 beat kicker. Personally I wanted to see j.willimovsky in the indoor 1.5k again. Among taller guys, he defies the height. Such a great, world class long distance swimmer.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James formerly competed for the Laurentian Voyageurs in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in February of 2018, placing 11th at the OUA Championships in the 200 IM, and graduated with a bachelor's degree in economics in May. He …

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