Swimming, Day 7 – Ledecky (USA) and Meilutyte (LTU) set second WR in Barcelona
The seventh day of the swimming competitions in Barcelona was highlighted by three new World Records and five finals distributing medals to 13 countries. The most impressive performance was achieved by Katie Ledecky (USA) in the women’s 800m free, where she set a new global mark of 8:13.86; at the same time, she became the second swimmer in history to win the 400m, 800m and 1500m free (also with WR) in the same edition of the Championships. This previous feat had been achieved by Hannah Stockbauer (GER) also at the Palau Sant Jordi, in 2003.
In the women’s 50m breaststroke, the final has not been swum yet, and already two new WR were established: in the morning heats, Yulia Efimova (RUS) had clocked 29.78, but the best world standard would only last few hours: in the semis, Ruta Meilutyte (LTU) improved that performance, advancing first to the final with a time of 28.48. The Lithuanian had already set a WR in the 100m breaststroke (1:04.35).
Coming back to the finals, Missy Franklin (USA) naturally imposed her supremacy, in the 200m backstroke, winning in a new Championships record of 2:04.76. In the two fastest events of the evening, Jeanette Ottesen gave the first title of the championships for Denmark, clinching the gold in the women’s 50m butterfly (25.24). In the men’s 50m free, Cesar Cielo (BRA) cried once more on the highest march of the podium, after triumphing in 21.32.
Finally, in the men’s 100m butterfly, Chad Le Clos (RSA) opened a new “era” in this event (which had been won by US swimmers since 2003), and got the gold in 51.06.
A great variety of countries had their swimmers winning medals in this session: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Hungary, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, and USA. For Trinidad and Tobago (bronze for George Bovell in the men’s 50m free) it was the first ever podium presence in the history of the FINA World Championships.
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