DORDRECHT, The Netherlands, July 9. THE European Junior Championships opened up with a FINA World Junior Record in Dordrecht, The Netherlands. Meanwhile, a WJR-record holder of her own, Daria Ustinova, had a pretty solid outing in semifinals.
Greece’s Apostolos Christou bettered his FINA World Junior Record in the men’s 100-meter back with a 54.41 in semis, while Italy’s Simone Sabbioni also cleared Christou’s previous record of 54.87 with a second-place 54.49. That’s just the standing FINA-recognized record as of the time the organization recognized the records this April dating back to the FINA World Junior Championships. There’s been a whole host of 53-second times by swimmers under 18, including Ryan Murphy’s 17-18 U.S. National age Group record of 53.38.
The young Russian star Evgeny Sedov won the men’s 50-meter fly in 23.83 after posting a preliminary effort of 23.69. He’s been much faster this year with a ninth-ranked 23.28 from Russian Nationals for the top time by a Russian this year. Russia went 1-2 in the sprint fly tonight in The Netherlands as Aleksandr Sadovnikov placed second in 24.03. Hungary’s Peter Holoda raced to third in 24.45.
Russia’s Maria Astashkina clinched the women’s 50-meter breaststroke title with a 31.90, while Italy’s Eleanora Clerici hit the wall second in 32.02. Sweden’s Sophie Hansson rounded out the top three in 32.13. Clerici had been faster in semis with a 31.85 to lead the way, but wasn’t able to replicate that speed in the finale.
Poland’s Wojciech Wojdak edged Norway’s Henrik Christiansen, 3:49.21 to 3:49.60, in the men’s 400-meter free, just outside the top 20 in the world currently anchored by Daniel Fogg with a 3:49.17 from British Nationals. Ukraine’s Mykhaylo Romanchuk took third overall in 3:51.29.
Spain’s Africa Zamorano Sanz won the women’s 400-meter IM with a 4:41.96, while Great Britain’s Rosie Rudin took second in 4:43.56. Great Britain’s Georgia Coates snared third overall in the distance medley with a 4:44.60.
Italy’s Simona Quadarella snatched the women’s 800-meter free crown with an 8:40.21, while Great Britain’s Holly Hibbott finished second in 8:41.41. Italy’s Linda Caponi raced to third in 8:41.72 with Hungary’s Melinda Novoszath just missing the podium with a fourth-place 8:41.91.
In semifinal action, Russia’s Daria Ustinova paced prelims of the women’s 100-meter free with a 55.09 before taking second to teammate Arina Openysheva, 55.14 to 55.19, in semis. Ustinova set up a second potential victory with a 2:10.38 clocking in the women’s 200-meter back semis as well. She’s the second-fastest swimmer in the world this year with a 2:08.02 from Russian Nationals, which stands as the World Junior Record.
Additionally, Spain’s Carmen Balbuena Heredia clocked a 2:11.79 in the women’s 200-meter fly prelims before leading semis with a 2:12.35. Great Britain’s Amelia Clynes took second with a 2:12.60 heading into the finale.Also in semis, Germany’s Max Pilger (2:13.15) and Hungary’s David Horvath (2:13.61) took first and second to pick up the top seeds in the finale.
In relay action, Great Britain’s Duncan Scott (50.15), Mile Munro (49.56), Martyn Walton (50.41) and Jack Smith (49.67) won the men’s 400-meter free relay in 3:19.78, while Russia’s Arina Openysheva (54.98), Maria Kudelkina (56.22), Daria Mullakaeva (56.35) and Ustinova (54.64) set a meet record with a 3:42.19 in the women’s 400-meter free relay.