WATCH Rie Kaneto Become First Japanese Woman Under 2:20 in 200 Breast


In the semi-final rounds of the women’s 200 breaststroke, Rie Kaneto has broken the Japanese Record in her best event for the second time in 2016. The 27-year old swam a 2:19.65 to take a commanding margin into the final.

Above, watch the video of the race, with actual racing starting at the 5: mark.

As reported by Retta Race:


  • Japanese National Record – 2:20.04, Rie Kaneto (2016)
  • JPN Olympic Standard – 2:23.21
  • The Podium –
    • Rie Kaneto, 2:19.65 (New National Record)
    • Kanako Watanabe, 2:23.54
    • Runa Imai, 2:24.29

Rie Kaneto made a statement earlier this year by registering a new Japanese National Record of 2:20.04 while competing at the Aquatic Super Series in Perth. But she broke a new barrier tonight, becoming the first Japanese woman in history to clock a sub-2:20 200m breaststroke time, winning gold and claiming her Olympic berth in a stunning time of 2:19.65. Of note, Kaneto is 27 years of age.

Splits for Kaneto: 1:07.93/1:11.72 = 2:19.65

Kaneto blew away the field, which included Kanako Watanabe, the woman who won the World Championship title just last summer. That title may be her only saving grace in qualifying for the Olympic team, as her time tonight of 2:23.54 falls short of the OLY standard of 2:23.21. Earlier in the meet, Daiya Seto missed out on the qualifying cut in the men’s 400m IM, but was named to the Olympic roster in the event due to the fact that he is the reigning World Champion. We’ll wait for official word for Watanabe’s case.

The 15-year-old wonder, Runa Imai, improved just slightly upon her 2:24.85 semi mark to close out with a 2:24.29 with a bronze medal tonight.

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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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