All favourites checked in on podium on the last day of the ultimate stop of FINA Swimming World Cup 2021 in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday October, 30, which decided the matter in their favor and helped them deliver one more big title in their careers.

Full Results

Individual medley events

Japanese Daiya Seto completed the IM treble and celebrated his 7th gold, opening up the ultimate Competition Day of the Swimming World Cup in Kazan. In his favourite 400m IM, he was a class above the rest: he took the lead early, soon was a full body length advantage to the opponents, and decidedly swam to the finish alone, 3:57.85. in this way he brushed the season’s best of his own, posted in Doha a week ago.

Russian Ilya Borodin pocketed his second silver in Kazan, after the one he scored in 2019, in a time of 4:02.89. Another host swimmer Daniil Pasynkov, representing a club, landed on bronze, 4:06.01, to add to his another achievement in the shorter race on Competition Day 2.

The result is not bad, but I definitely need training for Abu Dhabi.
By Daiya Seto, winner of the men's 200m IM

In 200m IM, Maria Ugolkova predictably won in 2:06.59, taking the lead in the race from the first meters. Exactly like she did in Berlin, in Budapest and in Doha. Turkish Viktoria Gunes collected her first silver this year, 2:06.72,  and Hungarian Zsuzsanna Jakabos, 2:06.94, collected her ninth medal in the current World Cup, which was also the third piece of Kazan, after being first in 400m IM and 200m fly.  

Butterfly events

In the 100m freestyle, the most decorated Australia’s Olympian Emma McKeon definitely in chase of the overall title, celebrated her second gold in Kazan. Her pace was rather fast, and she touched home in 55.63, improving herself by some 0.20 seconds, though it was a little slower than Canadian Margaret Macneil posted in Berlin, 55.30. Her closest challenger Maria Ugolkova of Switzerland never caught her, concluding on her 3rd silver in the circuit (in the race) in a time of 56.89. Lana Pudar, representing Bosnia and Hercegovina, completed the podium for the first time, 57.39. 

A local sensation happened in the men’s 50m butterfly, where Tom Shields of the USA did not win the race in his season’s best of 21.97. Hungarian Szebastian Szabo (22.32) was in his pursuit from the very start, and did not hesitate to out-touch him at finish, provided the chances. The Hungarian posted the new season’s mark of 22.19, and the world record holder Kyle Chalmers finished on third, 22.33, collecting his third medal in Kazan and the first bronze in 2021.

I am really happy to be back in my shape. It all started in the beginning of the world cup, the second leg I was also struggling. Honestly, it was the main goal to get back in good shape as soon as possible. I was close to the first place all the race long, and I am happy to seal the World Cup on a gold medal.
By Szebasztian Szabo, HUN, winner of the men’s 50m butterfly

Backstroke events

In the women’s 200m backstroke, the eventual win of Kira Toussaint never looked in doubt. She completed her backstroke treble and finished the circuit on a high note. In Kazan’s race she clocked 2:03.51, which was some 1 sec. slower than her season’s best, posted in Budapest, though pretty enough to defeat her Russian opponents – Daria K.Ustinova, 2:07.20, and Anastasiya Klyarovskaya, 2:07.54, both celebrated their first trip to the podium this year. Interesting to note, that Ustunova was silver in Kazan’s leg in 2019, and in 2021 managed to significantly improve her time, slicing some 3 seconds.

Of course, I wanted to be number one in all my races. I wanted to be a little bit faster today, because last week I was 1.5 sec faster, but I evidently lacked some energy. So I am happy with the time, and I am happy with the win. For the next competitions I would love to improve swimming free stroke longer courses for the relay.
By Kira Toussaint, NED, winner of the women’s 200m backstroke

Kliment Kolesnikov earned gold in the men’s 100m Backstroke in a time of 49.47. Producing a power start, he just clinched his teeth and worked on till he touched home. The seconds were the cream of the circuit. So did the result of the awardees, clocked by fresh face on the podium Pavel Samusenko, 50.44, and another Russian in the field Grigory Tarasevich, 50.82, who won the race of Kazan two years ago, though had been much slower.

Breaststroke events

Nika Godun of Russia, victorious in 50m breaststroke in Budapest, did not miss her point in Kazan as well. Not even in front of the 3rd leg winner Yuliya Efimova. She stormed her goal in the breaststroke sprint, and did not seem surprised with what happened in the end. It was her plan to dig out deep and rout all the rest field in the first 25m, earning as much beneficial seconds as possible. It proved out well. Touching first, 29.64, she congratulated her teammates Efimova on silver, 29.65, and Simonova on bronze, 30.46, both had already been in the podium in breaststroke events of Kazan.

This was the only distance I swam in Kazan. That means I am seriously getting ready for the European and world short course championships, one of which is about to get launched in a few days.
By Nika Godun, RUS, winner of the women’s 50m breaststroke

Like on the women’s part,  the intrigue in the 200m breaststroke men was live till the very end. Daiya Seto competed Arno Kamminga of the Netherlands. Of course, there were Russian Anton Chupkov and German Fabian Schwingenschlogl, both already victorious in Kazan, who could stay competitive in such a strong competition.

Daiya Seto did not have a deep start, and were not a good lead after the first half. Habitually, he switched on to the up gear some 90 meters to the finish, step by step constructing the winning gap. The mighty Japanese won his second title of the day, the 4th in Kazan, which helped him to celebrate Kazan’s overall win of the leg in a time of 2:01.49.

Silver went to Arno Kamminga of the Netherlands, 2:02.13, followed by the Russian star Anton Chupkov, 2:02.71.

Freestyle events

In the second longest race of the circuit, 800 free for women, Australian Leah Neale was the most decorated swimmer in the final, and the only one who used to travel to the podium in previous legs. She proved the favorite’s status, and easily checked in on top for the first time in the Swimming World Cup-2021. In fact, she registered her second gold of Kazan in 8:22.53.

Russian Valeriia Salamatina touched home on second, 8:23.54, though her signature distances are relays. And her teammate Aleksandra Bykova, bronze medalist of the 400 free on Day 1, finished on third, she swam the distance in 8:26.81.

This is the last event for me this year, I have been competing since June, and I am very tired. I am happy, I have managed to finish the world cup on a high note. The result is not that high, but I am pretty satisfied with it.
By Leah Neale, winner of the women’s 800m freestyle

The podium in 100m women’s freestyle had a great resemblance to the one in Doha, though slightly in different order. The steady thing was Emma McKeon, who congratulated herself on her 4th gold finish in the World Cup this distance and her second gold of the day. The 5-time Olympic champion did not give a chance to any of her challengers and though she could not equal her WC’s and season’s best of Budapest, 50.58, her result was pretty competitive, 50.67.

The minor medals were earned by the two in the reverse order, comparing to the leg 3 – Michelle Coleman secured silver in 51.94, and another Aussie in the field Madison Wilson got bronze in 52.24. both registered their 3rf and 4th medal in Kazan respectively.

I am in pretty in good shape now. The preparations, which I took for the Olympics, still pay off.
By Emma McKeon, AUS, winner of the women’s 100m freestyle

In the men’s 200m Freestyle the big game not unexpectedly involved Matthew Sates and Danas Rapsys.  who didn’t find special difficulties in overtaking other challengers. They had more arguments to take the gold, but could not define the winner between them. Both did not hit their season’s best of 1:41.51 set by South African on Leg#2 in Budapest, but they were a second ahead of the bronze medal holder. Rapsys was the winner of the Kazan’s leg in 2019. The bronze went to Fernando Scheffer of Brazil, who secured his first medal for the nation, 1:42.83.

That’s fantastic that we clocked the same time. I am happy with that. The result is not so fast, but I am satisfied with it. There are so many challengers now in 2021, comparing to 2019. I am happy with that as well, because the competition became more interesting.
By Danas Rapsys, LTU, winner of the men’s 200m freestyle

Mixed medley relay

In the medley relay action, like in the free stroke, the competition was between Russian clubs only. Moscow (Stepan Kalabin, Vsevolod Zanko, Anastasiia Zhuravleva and Rozaliya Nasretdinova) was 0,23 ahead of the silver medal winner Novosibirskaya oblast (which played almost the same roster, like yesterday, when they won the free mixed relay challenge).  Kazan’s Ekaterina Kuznetsova, Vyatcheslav Malkovskiy, Aleksandr Obsharov and  Olesya Korchagina earned bronze in a time of 1:42.63.

Summery of the Kazan's meet. 36 sets of medals, 4 national, 1 world cup and 1 world record, numerous broadcasts and posts in the social media of all kinds. These are the key figures of the 3 busy-packed days of the FINA Swimming World Cup #4, staged on the Tatars land in the heart of Russia. The ultimate leg, which was definitely a success and hit the tape of the circuit.

Australia set pace, fully dominating in Kazan in all events where they appeared, harvesting 9 gold, 4 silver and  bronze medals. However, they left the door open for the Netherlands and Russia, and 10 other countries claim their golden shares. Consequently, the most successful swimmers in Kazan was Daiya Seto, conquering 4 champions titles. Emma McKeon was the best for the women’s part, earning 3 gold and 1 silver medal.