SWC 2015, Paris-Chartres, Day 1: Intense French leg for the swimmers
Katinka Hosszu (HUN)’s two victories, Chad Le Clos (RSA) outstanding butterfly strokes and French team’s overall good results were the highlights of the first competition day at the second leg of the FINA/airweave Swimming World Cup 2015 in Paris-Chartres (FRA).
France was well-represented today in Chartres with 28 athletes taking part in the competition as French swimmers emerged victorious in three events; the men’s 100m freestyle with Mehdy Metella touching home in 48.69 in front of a cheering crowd and the men’s 100m backstroke with triple World champion Camille Lacourt. And finally, the surprise of the day, Anna Santamans, who qualified fastest for the women's freestyle 50m final, more than 0.6 second faster than number two Natalie Coughlin (USA), topped the 50m free for the pleasure of the crowd. Coughlin finished second touching home in 24.78.
The latter topped the 50m backstroke in 27.65. With this victory Coughlin wins her 25th gold medal at the World Cup and her first since 2010. The American hadn’t participated in a World Cup leg since five years. Emily Seebohm (AUS) won this event in Moscow but took the second place in Chartres.
Kazan 2015: Diver, judge and doctor
Gerhard Bayer is changing his clothes – in a bit of a hurry. His competition is just over, but there is not too much time left to relax, to celebrate another fine performance (a medal winning one!), soon the next event starts and they need him.
In the judging chair.
The German doctor looks for a white T-shirt in his bag. “They gave me an official shirt but it didn’t fit. It was too small…” he admits. Well, to be honest, Mr. Bayer is not reminding us of the skinny Chinese divers – but one should admire him even more for his love towards diving.
SWC 2015: Le Clos: “The most important is that great swimmers are competing in Chartres”
FINA and the Fédération Française de Natation (FFN) today declared open the second leg of the FINA/airweave Swimming World Cup 2015 in Chartres (FRA). A total 36 countries will be competing in 38 finals that will resume on Saturday August 15 in the Odyssée Complex and run through Sunday August 16.
FINA Executive Director Mr. Cornel Marculescu, FFN Secretary General Michel Sauget, NAT Event Organisation (NEO) CEO Dominique Baron and city of Chartres representative Karine Dorange attended the press conference demonstrating the municipality’s commitment and support to the annual circuit of the FINA/airweave Swimming World Cup.
French swimming stars Camille Lacourt (winner of the men's 50m and 100m Backstroke in Moscow) and Florent Manaudou took questions from the media representatives on-site. Other internationally recognised athletes taking part today were Alia Atkinson (JAM), Missy Franklin (USA) and Chad Le Clos (RSA) overall winner of last year’s Swimming World Cup.
Kazan 2015: With a pacemaker in the heart, water polo is an eternal love
The Happy Hippos were not so happy this morning. No, they are not real hippopotami, they are water polo players from Hungary, this is the name of their club, reminding the team members of the founding fathers who, well, got a little bit wilder and heavier once their heydays had been over, but still wanted to play their beloved game.
So, our heroic Hippos tried to score a big margin win against Volga 45 (RUS) in the 45+ age-group in the Masters water polo tournament but they had to settle for a 12-3 victory. This is something you always had in the good old days. Counting. Goal difference, semi-final pairings… Their biggest rival in the group, the St. Petersburg Masters won 17-6 against Volga on the opening day. Then the Hungarians drew 10-10 with the Russians, so goal difference seemed to be the decisive factor in reaching the top spot in the group.
Kazan 2015: Though injured, Minister Leonov swims his 50m free in Kazan
Tatarstan’s Minister of Youth and Sports, Vladimir Leonov came on the hard way. The rocky one. Actually, he went through something similar what Japan’s star swimmer Kosuke Hagino experienced a couple of months ago.
Mr. Leonov biked in the countryside, around Kazan and had a bad fall. He broke his lower arm and injured his legs – like Hagino, who were unable to compete in Kazan – but still, on Wednesday, when swimmers of heat 42 (age group: 35-39) in the 50m free were called at the FINA World Masters Championships, he marched from the last call room to the pool deck.
He set his goggles, his cap, the starting block on Lane 6, took his marks, then – go! Though it was inevitable that he is off his peak form – he wore a bandage on his right arm – he covered the distance in 28.85 seconds, trying to be on full speed. Once out of the pool, the 38 year-old Minister might find it harder to walk back to the locker room than swimming a pool length, but as a former water polo player, Mr. Leonov has surely got used to bearing pain.
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