PR 63 - Melissa Franklin (USA): four wins and best performance in Moscow
Lausanne (SUI), October 20 – Melissa Franklin (USA) was the athlete to beat in the third leg of the FIN/ARENA Swimming World Cup 2011, organised in Moscow (RUS) on October 18-19. The North American revelation of the year – she was one of the stars of the FINA World Championships in Shanghai (CHN) – got four gold medals in the Russian capital in the 100m and 200m free, and 100m and 200m backstroke. Her 200m back result of 2:02.84 (in the heats) was also the best female performance (936 points) of the meet.
Four other athletes got two triumphs in Moscow: Therese Alshammar (SWE, 50m free and 50m butterfly – she is the new leader of the women’s ranking), Allison Schmitt (USA, 200m free, where she shared the gold with Franklin, and 400m free), Valentina Artemyeva (RUS, 50m and 100m breaststroke), and Erica Morningstar (CAN, 100m and 200m individual medley).
In the men’s field, the biggest attraction of this leg was the presence of the best swimmer in history, Michael Phelps (USA). The 14-time Olympic champion won two races in Moscow, the 200m backstroke and 100m individual medley. As in the previous leg, Paul Biedermann (GER) was the best in the 200m and 400m free (in the shorter distance, he narrowly beat Phelps), while Naoya Tomita (JPN) touched first in the 100m and 200m breaststroke. His compatriot Hidemasa Sano was again the best male performer of the meet, thanks to his 200m butterfly victory in 1:51.62 (934 points). South African Chad Le Clos, winner of the 200m individual medley, reinforced the lead of the men’s overall ranking of the competition.
The FINA/ARENA Swimming World Cup can be followed through live streaming of finals via FINA TV at www.fina.org.