World Top 5 Times Set on Day 1 at Mare Nostrum – Monaco


After a sleepy prelims session, the stars came out for the first evening session at the final stop of the 2018 Mare Nostrum Series tour in Monaco.

That began in the very first race of the finals session, the men’s 200 breaststroke, ,where the World Record holder Ippei Watanabe swam a 2:07 for the second time in the last 5 days.

Comparisons of Mare Nostrum Swims:

Prelims Finals Finals Split #1 Finals Split #2 Finals Split #3 Finals Split #4
Canet 2:13.16 2:09.13 29.60 33.37 (1:02.97) 33.25 (1:36.22) 32.91 (2:09.13)
Barcelona 2:12.17 2:07.74 29.28 32.47 (1:01.75) 32.72 (1:34.47) 33.27 (2:07.74)
Monaco 2:14.48 2:07.56 29.37 32.46 (1:01.83) 32.75 (1:34.58) 32.98 (2:07.56)

Watanabe has had plenty of endurance in this 200 breaststroke, but the vigor with which he attacked the front-half has made the difference. For comparison, when he swam his World Record in January of 2017, the only time in-season he’s been faster than he was this week in Barcelona and Monaco, he opened in 1:01.33. In other words: he needs a fast start to catch up to his stated goal of another World Record this summer at Pan Pacs.

The swim from Watanabe broke the Meet Record, and came up exactly one-tenth short of the Mare Nostrum Record of 2:07.46 set last year by Anton Chupkov in Canet. The swim also improves Watanabe’s standing as #2 in the world this year.

2017-2018 LCM MEN 200 BREAST

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Chupkov, the defending World Champion, was 2nd on Saturday in 2:08.94, followed by Yasuhiro Koseki (2:08.99).

In the women’s 100 fly, Japan’s Rikako Ikee, who has been fast all week, put up the first world #1 of the meet when she swam a 56.23. That jumped World Record holder Sarah Sjostrom for the fastest time globally in 2018. It also broke Ikee’s own Japanese Record of 56.38 done in April. (Read more about Ikee’s swim here).

Russia’s Svetlana Chimrova was 2nd in the 100 fly in 57.80, followed by Sweden’s Louise Hansson in 58.96.

Ikee also swam a casual 26.61 as the fastest time in the 50 fly quarterfinals. She was 26.1 in the 1/8 final, and has been 25 already this week.

It wasn’t a world #1, but American Kathleen Baker did break the Monaco Meet Record in the women’s 200 backstroke in 2:07.02. She broke the Tour Record in the 100 back earlier in the week in Barcelona, but didn’t swim the 200 at that meet. Now, in Monaco, with the change at a more rested 200, she jumped to 5th in the World Rankings this year, including 1st among Americans. She won the race by almost 4 seconds.

Saturday also saw the first few rounds of the 50m race shootouts (including freestyle), where Ukraine’s Andrey Govorov shocked with a new Mare Nostrum Record of 22.69 in the 50 fly.That times a 2016 swim as Govorov’s best time and leaves him ranked as the 4th-fastest performer in history

Other Saturday Evening Results

  • Russia’s Yulia Efimova swam 1:06.66 in the 100 breaststroke to dominate the A-Final, almost a second slower than she swam in Canet. The second-fastest time of the field was actually Canadian teenager Faith Knelson, who swam 1:07.49 in the B-Final – just missing her lifetime best from the Commonwealth Games by two-tenths of a second. American Katie Meili added time from prelims to finish 6th in 1:09.17.
  • Japan’s Katsumi Nakamura won the men’s 100 free in 48.80, beating-out runner-up and  countrymate Katsuhiro Matsumoto handily (49.41). Russian teen Kliment Kolesnikov was 3rd in 49.47 and American Ryan Held dropped a quarter-of-a-second for 4th in 49.48.
  • France’s Charlotte Bonnet won the women’s 200 free in 1:57.65: two seconds ahead of a field that was without Katinka Hosszu, the top qualifier who scratched finals. Russian Record holder Viktoria Andreeva took 2nd in 1:59.69, while American Missy Franklin was 3rd in 2:00.36. Franklin was faster in finals in each of the two prior stops, and seems to be tiring a little bit late in her first week of competition back since the 2016 Olympic  Games.
  • Denmrark’s Viktor Bromer cruised in prelims, but went full-bore in finals and finished with a 1:56.29. That’s his fastest time this season. That time ranks 15th in the world this season, but is the fastest by a European not from Hungary in 2018.
  • Australian Ben Treffers won the men’s 100 back in 54.70.
  • Swiss swimmer Jeremy Desplanches won the men’s 200 IM in 1:58.46. That’s about four-tenths slower than where he was in Canet to open the series. Kolesnikov, a backstroker and freestyler by trade, finished 2nd in 2:01.22.
  • Norway’s Henrik Christiansen won the men’s 400 free in 3:51.07. He faded at the end, splitting just 57.99 in the final 100, but by then he’d built a two-plus second lead on the field.
  • Hosszu, who didn’t have a great finals session overall, finished strong with a 4:38.46 to win the women’s 400 IM. That’s almost identical to the time she swam in Barcelona, and exactly a second better than Barcelona.

Shootout Quarterfinals – Top 4s/Advancers

Men’s 50 fly

  1. Andrey Govorov, Ukraine – 22.69 (Mare Nostrum Record)
  2. Michael Andrew, USA – 23.31
  3. Oleg Kostin, Russia – 23.74
  4. Mathys Goosen, Netherlands – 24.00

Women’s 50 fly

  1. Rikako Ikee, Japan – 26.61
  2. Rozaliya Nasretdinova, Russia – 26.80
  3. Viktoria Andreeva, Russia – 26.95
  4. Louise Hansson, Sweden – 27.08

Men’s 50 back

  1. Nikita Ulyanov, Russia – 25.65
  2. Ben Treffers, Australia – 25.68
  3. Ryan Held, USA – 25.81
  4. Mohamed Samey Hassan, Egypt – 25.87

Women’s 50 back

  1. Anastasia Fesikova, Russia – 27.97
  2. Mimosa Jallow, Finland – 28.05
  3. Mariia Kameneva, Russia – 28.09
  4. Caroline Pilhatsch, Austria – 28.16

Men’s 50 breast

  1. Yasuhiro Koseki, Japan – 27.23
  2. Arno Kamminga, Netherlands – 27.73
  3. Kirill Prigoda, Russia – 27.77
  4. Lawrence Palmer, Great Britain, 27.93

Women’s 50 breast

  1. Molly Hannis, USA – 30.46
  2. Yulia Efimova, Russia – 30.49
  3. Macarena Ceballos, Argentina – 31.00
  4. Faith  Knelson, Canada – 31.01

Men’s 50 free

  1. Michael Andrew, USA – 22.21
  2. Shinri Shioura, Japan – 22.48
  3. Ari Pekka Liukkonen, Finland – 22.97
  4. Guido BUscaglia, Argentina – 23.03

Women’s 50 ffree

  • Pernille Blume, Denmark – 24.50
  • Rikako Ikee, Japan – 24.91
  • Kim Bush, Netherlands – 25.01
  • Charlotte Bonnet, France – 25.06

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2 years ago

On men 50 you got 1 of the 1/8 results only
Top 4 for tomorrow on 1/4 were
Fratus 21,89
Andrew 22,24
Maxim 22,26
Shioura 22,28

2 years ago

As much as I like the phrasing “is the fastest by a European not from Hungary in 2018”, Bromer’s time is .01s slower than what Jan Świtkowski swam on May 24th in Łódź at the Polish Championships. That time of 1:56.28 is listed on FINA’s world rankings as the 15th fastest in the World this year.

2 years ago

I think Liu Zige owns the Asian record in the 100 fly from 2009

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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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