LUXEMBOURG, February 7. WORLD champion Katinka Hosszu competed in the first two of a planned 16 event finals today at the long course Euro Meet in the small landlocked country, winning the 800 free and 400 IM with little difficulty.
Hosszu started her day with a meet record 8:29.42 in the 800, erasing the 8:34.88 set by Switzerland’s Flavia Rigamonti in 2004. Another world-class swimmer, France’s Coralie Balmy, placed second with an 8:36.65 with Germany’s Leonie Beck’s 8:37.06 placing third.
Unlike many of her multi-event meets, Hosszu had plenty of rest before her next event, the 400 IM, where she posted a 4:37.93 for another meet record. This time, it was her own record of 4:41.18 from last year that she broke. Great Britain’s Candice Hall was a distant second with a 4:51.45 to touch out the 4:51.83 by Germany’s Kathrin Demler.
Gal Nevo, Laszlo Cseh and Philip Heintz had a close battle in the men’s 400 IM, with each enjoying the lead throughout the race. Heintz led after fly with a 58.41 split, with Cseh pulling off a 1:04.4 to take the lead after backstroke. Cseh still was in front after breaststroke with a 1:14.1 split, but Nevo posted a quick 58.6 to win the race in 4:19.06. Cseh was second with a 4:21.54 while Heintz settled for third with a 4:21.65.
France’s Damien Joly had a dominating performance in the men’s 1500 freestyle, posting a 15:19.18 that was 15 seconds ahead of the 15:34.53 swum by Soren Meissner of Germany and the 15:53.50 by Israel’s Marc Henawi.
Hosszu coasted through the only preliminary swim of the day, leading qualifying in the 200 fly with a 2:11.29. She just missed Sara Isakovic’s meet record of 2:11.01, but will be gunning for it in tomorrow’s finals. A full two seconds back in qualifying was Martina van Berkel with a 2:13.39.
Velimir Stjepanovic of Serbia, a finalist in the 200 fly at the 2012 Olympics, leads qualifying in that event with a 2:00.31. Notably, Cseh, the 2008 Olympic silver medalist in the 200 fly and 2013 world silver medalist in the 100 fly, failed to earn a second swim in the event after his 400 IM race. Cseh posted a surprising 2:09.87 for 23rd place.