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BARCELONA, Spain, August 4. WITH Ye Shiwen in the finale, Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu knew she was going to have to go out faster than anyone else ever has in the women’s 400-meter IM and hold on for a win at the FINA World Championships.
Hosszu, out under world-record pace by more than two seconds at the 200, held up her part of the bargain with a sizzling 4:30.41 for the win. Funny thing is, Hosszu might not have needed that sort of pace since Ye never turned on the jets in the freestyle as she wound up seventh in 4:38.51. Ye’s final split to set the world record in London has become legendary, often conflated with being faster than Ryan Lochte’s final freestyle leg in London as well. When you put up that type of performance, it forces strategy changes.
Either way, even though Hosszu admitted to being in serious pain after the swim, she collected her second gold medal of the meet with an IM sweep. USA’s Katie Hoff is the last person to have accomplished the feat with sweeps in 2005 and 2007. Hosszu now has three world titles on her resume as she also took home the 400 IM in 2009 with a techsuited 4:30.31 that remains the meet record. She also has a trio of bronzes, including third-place in the 200 fly this week.
Hosszu has managed to change professional swimming going forward. While most swimmers in the past focused on training before pulling off meets such as this, Hosszu did it all while focusing on prize-swimming throughout the past year to support her professional career. If there’s a money meet somewhere in the world, Hosszu is likely there swimming every single event. Her setup is likely the future of professional swimming for those that don’t score multi-million dollar contracts like Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte and likely Missy Franklin when she finally turns pro.
Spain’s Mireia Belmont Garcia raced to second with a time of 4:31.21. That scorched her Spanish record of 4:33.91 from the 2012 Spanish Open and vaulted her into the top 10 all time in the event. USA’s Elizabeth Beisel pulled into bronze position with a third-place time of 4:31.69. That’s Beisel’s third career world medal following a gold in the 400 IM in 2011.
USA’s Maya DiRado, who had an unbelievable breakout year, wound up fourth in 4:32.70, while Great Britain’s Hannah Miley touched fifth in 4:34.16. Hungary’s Zsuzsanna Jakabos (4;34.50) and Japan’s Miyu Otsuka (4:39.21) completed the rest of the championship finale.