2019 JAPANESE STUDENT SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Friday, September 6th – Sunday, September 8th
- Tatsumi International Swimming Centre, Tokyo, Japan
- Day 1 Recap
- Start Lists/Results (in Japanese)
The 2019 Japanese Student Swimming Championships got off to an electrifying start with 2 meet records having already gone down on day 1. Tonight’s finals session was equally as intense, with 19-year-old Rio Shirai making more magic happen at the Tatsumi International Swimming Centre in Tokyo.
The two-time Asian Games relay medalist already made waves yesterday with a lifetime best mark of 2:07.87 in the women’s 200m back. This evening, Shirai produced another meet record, but in the 200m free, firing off a time of 1:57.87.
Splitting 57.11/1:01.26, the teen’s sub-1:58 outing overtook the previous meet mark of 1:58.37 and beat out tonight’s field by almost 2 seconds.
Runner-up in the 200m free race was Runa Imai, last night’s 100m breast winner, who clocked 1:59.74 to represent the only other swimmer of the race to dip under the 2:00 threshold this evening.
Shirai wasn’t done, however, leading off her Toyo University women’s 4x100m medley relay in yet another meet record mark. She led her squad off a backstroke split of 59.42, a time that overtakes the previous meet standard en route to her team taking the gold in the event in an overall time of 4:01.10, a new meet record by over 3 seconds.
Other women making some noise included Ai Soma, the 21-year-old who produced a winning 100m fly mark of 58.51. Splitting 27.20/31.31, Soma was able to edge out runner-up Anna Shinno of the University of Tsukuba, who hit the wall .3 later in 58.81. Olympian Suzuka Hasegawa rounded out the top 3 in 58.96.
Soma earned a 4th place finish at the 2018 Asian Games in this 100m fly event, producing a time there of 58.68.
As for the men’s 200m free, a trio of competitors hit the 1:48-range in tonight’s final, led by Fuyu Yoshida. The Kanto Gakuen University student-athlete produced a winning mark of 1:48.09 to lead Keisuke Yoshida and Kaito Nakamura who touched in ever-so-close outings of 1:48.62 and 1:48.63, respectively.
Yoshida’s time tonight was quicker than the 1:48.67 he logged at this year’s Japan Open, but slightly slower than the 1:48.19 he registered at the Japan Swim just one month earlier. For Nakamura, his 1:48.63 tonight was quicker than his 1:49.05 from the Japan Swim.
A big-time swim came courtesy of Shinnosuke Ishikawa in the men’s 100m fly. Ishikawa has been making headlines in this event throughout his career, establishing a new Japanese High School National Record in a time of 51.92 just over a year ago.
Earlier this summer, Ishikawa busted out a mark of 52.05 to tie Russia’s Egor Kuimov in Naples to earn the World University Games gold medal.
Flash forward to tonight and the man cranked out the fastest time of his career by almost a second, stopping the clock in a mighty 51.11. Ishikawa’s splits included 24.16/26.95 to give him a time just .11 away from Kohei Kawamoto’s national record set back in the supersuit era of 2009. He now checks-in as the 2nd fastest Japanese swimmer of all-time in the event.
For more perspective, Ishikawa’s effort would have claimed bronze at this year’s World Championships in Gwangju, Korea behind winner Caeleb Dressel of the United States and Andrei Minakov of Russia. In fact, Ishikawa’s time falls just .01 outside of the all-time top 25 performers list in this men’s 100m fly event.
Behind Ishikawa tonight was Nao Horomura, who took the men’s 200m fly eysterday. Horomura clocked 52.11, while Daiki Tanaka wrangled up bronze in 52.12. Tanaka took silver behind Horomura in the 2fly yesterday.
- Runa Imai doubled up on her 100m breast victory from night 1 with another gold this evening, winning the women’s 200m IM in 2:11.37. As mentioned above, she also took silver in the 200m free in 1:59.74.
- The men’s team from Japan University landed atop the podium in the 4x100m medley relay, clocking an overall time of 3:36.71 for the win. The winner of the men’s 100m fly, Ishikawa, knocked down a head-turning split of 50.72 on the fly leg. That would have checked in as the 3rd fastest split of the entire field at this year’s World Championships.