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Fast Swimming at Spanish Nationals -- December 23, 2001

GIJON, SPAIN, Dec. 23. FEW records but fast swimming was the order of the weekend at the Spanish Short Course Championships this weekend.

Venerable backstroker Nina Zhivanevskaya was the star ofthe show with four golds. Nina Z., who seemingly has been around since Duke Kahanamoku was in his hey-day nearly a century ago(!) but in actuality has only been swimming for Spain the last few years after starting out competing for Mother Russia, won the three backstroke races and the 100 free.

Zhivanevskaya won the 50 back (28.56), then followed with a 1:00.49 100 triumph (1:00.01 in the prelims) and then 2:08.60 to win the double-century. In the 100 free she came out on top (55.91) over Anna Belon Paloma's 56.19.

Angela San Juan was a double-winner in the butterflys, winning the 50 (Spanish record 27.56) and the 100 (1:00.56). The 200 went to Mireia Garcia Sanchez (2:09.91).

The other individual record was by breaststroker Anna Harm-Man Abella, who went 2:30.19 to set a 17-under mark.

Backstroker David Ortega picked up a pair of gold medals in his specialty, winning the 50 (25.44), the 100 (54.53). The 200 was won by Jorge Ulibarri
(1:54.54). In the 50-100 flys it was all Ulibarri again, with his 23.85-52.78 clockings. The 200 fly went to Jordi Pau (1:56.99) and Ulibarri also stroked to victory in the 100 free (48.84) with long-course 50 free record-holder Eduardo Lorento next (49.05).

Lorente was king of the 50, however, with his 22.21 winning swim.

Freestyler Laura Rocha showed fine form with wins in the 200 free (1:58.59) and 400 (4:11.74). In the men's 200, Javiet Botello won (1:48.85) with Olaf
Wildeboer second (1:48.98).

The men's 400 free went to Marcus Rivera (3:51.49); the 100 breast to Ivan Aguirre (1:01.48 to Marc Capdevilla's 1:01.93); and the 200 breast to Brenton Cebello (2:12.51), who also won the 400 IM (4:14.91).

Two relay records also fell,the Spanish club in the men's 800 free (7:14.35 by Club Natacio Sabadell) and the women's 200 medley (1:55.94 by Real Canoe & CN Sabadell).

Full results are available at: www.nuoto.it.

-- Bill Bell