World Record Holder Ippei Watanabe Lowers Prenot’s 200 BR Meet Record


American Josh Prenot came in as the favorite in the men’s 200 breast final after lowering the meet record in the preliminaries and holding the #2 time in the world for the year. However, in the final, it was world record holder Ippei Watanabe who came through with the victory in a time of 2:07.75 to take out Prenot’s prelim record.

In the heats, Prenot had gone 2:08.02 to erase Japanese legend Kosuke Kitajima‘s 2010 record of 2:08.36 off the books. Watanabe was just 6th fastest among the A-finalists in the prelims in 2:12.15, so it wasn’t clear whether he was just cruising or wasn’t on his best form.

In the final he proved it to be the former, as he held 2nd to Australian Matthew Wilson through the 150 before closing in 32.80 to take over the lead and win the gold in 2:07.75.

Below, check out a split comparison of the two previous and the new meet record in the event:

Kitajima, 2010 Pan Pacs Prenot, 2018 Pan Pacs (Prelims) Watanabe, 2018 Pan Pacs (Final)
28.87 29.42 29.26
1:01.53 (32.66) 1:01.94 (32.68) 1:01.94 (32.68)
1:34.61 (33.08) 1:34.81 (32.87) 1:34.95 (33.01)
2:08.36 (33.75) 2:08.02 (33.21) 2:07.75 (32.80)

Kitajima had the most front-end speed out of the three swims, while Prenot was quickest down the third length and Watanabe was fastest coming home.

Both Prenot (2:07.28) and Watanabe (2:07.56) had been faster this year, and Watanabe’s world record is over a second better than he was tonight in 2:06.67.

In the final, Prenot ended up missing the medals altogether, with Australians Zac Stubblety-Cook (2:07.89) and Wilson (2:08.22) winning silver and bronze. Japan’s Yasuhiro Koseki was 4th in 2:08.25, with Prenot back in 5th (2:08.44).

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2 years ago

Zac Stubblety-Cook has been a revelation at this pan pacs .. he came home strong in the final metres that I thought he might steal the win from the Japanese swimmer .. suddenly Australian men’s breastroke is looking promising again .. now where are those flyers??

Reply to  Verram
2 years ago

The Fike Swim squad is looking very strong.

Love to Swim
2 years ago

Video of the race

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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