ST. PETERSBURG, Russia, December 21. HUNGARY's Katinka Hosszu has this professional swimming thing down pat. Having already earned more than $150,000 as the FINA World Cup Queen and taking home nearly $20,000 from her short course worlds exploits, Hosszu jumped back into the earning role again at the Salnikov Cup in Russia with four golds and a silver.
She opened with a gold-medal check in the women's 200 free. She topped the field in 1:55.14, while Spain's Melanie Costa Schmid (1:55.41) and Great Britain's Hannah Miley (1:56.31) rounded out the podium. Hosszu (1:53.57) and Costa Schmid (1:54.45) have both been faster, sporting second and eighth-ranked times already. Miley, meanwhile, moved up to a 19th-ranked tie with Daryna Zevina with her swim.
Hosszu followed her 200 free victory with a triumph in the women's 100 fly. Hosszu raced to a 56.73 for the win, jumping to sixth overall in the world standing this year as just the sixth swimmer under 57 seconds. Belarus' Aliaksandra Herasimenia placed second in 57.05, while Russia's Veronika Popova clinched third in 57.84. Herasimenia moved to ninth in the world with her swim, while Popova missed her top time of 57.65 from Euro Short Course Champs.
Hosszu then demonstrated just how ridiculously good she has become in short course events, quite possibly the best female short course swimmer of recent times, as she touched out Australia's Rachel Goh, 27.39 to 27.44, in the women's 50 back. Hosszu is a multi-event superstar, while Goh is a dedicated sprint backstroke specialist and is among the world's best sprint backstrokers. Hosszu, after capturing two other events during the evening already, demonstrated just how incredible her range is with the third title. Russia's Nadezhda Vinyukova wound up third in 27.66. Notably, Hosszu managed to take down the Hungarian record in the sprint backstroke with her swim, beating the 27.76 previously held by Nikolett Szepesi since 2008.
Hosszu finally missed a podium in the women's 50 free, much to the relief of her competition. Herasimenia moved from her silver-winning effort in the 100 fly up to a gold in the 50 free with a 23.88, while USA's Jessica Hardy placed second in 24.38. Russia's Svetlana Knyaginina earned third-place honors in 24.49, while Hosszu wound up fifth in 25.00. Herasimenia nearly picked off her world-leading 23.64 from short course worlds with her swim, while Hardy bettered her season best of 24.41 from the Stockholm stop of the FINA World Cup.
Great Britain's Hannah Miley then turned in a strong 8:18.51 to win the women's 800 free, just three seconds off her fifth-ranked season best of 8:15.66. Hosszu chalked up her fourth podium of the night with a second-place 8:32.15, while Russia's Elena Sokolova snared third in 8:32.27.
Hosszu moved back to the top of the podium with her amazing fourth gold medal of the night, as she continued to replicate her jaw-dropping FINA World Cup nightly schedules. This time, she posted a 2:06.26 to won the women's 200 back. Russia's Polina Lapshina (2:07.42) and Maria Gromova (2:08.59) placed second and third. The performance was the first for Hosszu under 2:07 this year, beating her season best of 2:07.12 and moving her to 16th in the world rankings.
Vlad Morozov, who has been turning up the heat in short course sprint events of late with world titles as well as a world-leading time of 45.65 from short course worlds, cruised to victory in the men's 100 free this evening in 46.38. Nikita Lobintsev (47.22) and Evgeny Lagunov (47.25) had a battle for second, just .03 seconds apart. While Lagunov already has a third-ranked 46.52 to his credit from the European Short Course Championships, Lobintsev moved to 16th in the world this year with his swim.
Australia's Sally Foster surged past Russia's Valentina Artemyeva, 1:06.24 to 1:06.48, for the women's 100 breast crown. She dropped a 34.53 coming home after Artemyeva led on the way out with a 31.35. Ukraine's Ganna Dzerkal finished third overall in 1:06.72.
Hungary's Laszlo Cseh did not need a 4:00 time to win the men's 400 IM here like he turned in for silver at the short course worlds earlier this month. He was able to ease in with a 4:07.57 to win the first-place check, while Ukraine's Maxym Shemberyev touched second in 4:08.14. Russia's Alexander Tikhonov finished third in 4:09.19.
After a bit of a disappointing short course worlds where he came up short while vying for world titles in the backstroke events after owning that stroke on the FINA World Cup tour, Stanislav Donets moved back into the win column with a 50.52 in the men's 100 back. Australia's Robert Hurley (50.77) and Ashley Delaney (51.03) took second and third in the event. Donets (49.49) and Hurley (50.18) have both been faster this year with Delaney bettering his season-best of 50.61.
Russia's Nikolay Skvortsov dominated the men's 200 fly with a sizzling 1:51.96, while Cseh earned his second podium of the night with a 1:53.28. Russia's Andrey Tambovskiy touched third in 1:56.64. Skvortsov nearly matched his fifth-ranked season best of 1:51.77, while Cseh fell well off his fourth-ranked 1:51.66 but still managed to cut a second-place check.
Denmark's Mads Glaesner posted a 3:42.29 to win the men's 400 free, while Ukraine's Sergiy Frolov touched second in 3:43.45. Switzerland's Dominik Meichtry rounded out the top three in 3:43.48. Glaesner has been much faster this year with a 3:40.09 to his credit from short course worlds, while Frolov came up just a second short of his top time of 3:42.73. Meichtry jumped to 20th in the world rankings with his effort.
Russia's Viatcheslav Sinkevich put up a 58.28 for the win in the men's 100 breast, powering past the field with a 30.33 down the stretch. Ukraine's Igor Borysik (58.41) and Andriy Kovalenko (58.49) placed second and third in the finale. Sinkevich came up just a bit short of his ninth-ranked season best of 57.83 from short course worlds.
Cseh earned his third medal of the night, with one of every color, with a bronze-winning 53.91 in the men's 100 IM as Trinidad and Tobago's George Bovell blasted the sprint medley with a 51.69 and Russia's Dmitry Zhilin touched second in 53.58. Bovell placed about a half-second behind his second-ranked 51.20 from the Berlin stop of the FINA World Cup. Only Ryan Lochte's world-record 50.71 from semifinals of short course worlds has been faster than Bovell this year.
South Africa's Roland Schoeman, who is currently in the market for a new training base with the Phoenix Swim Club upheaval of late, tracked down the men's 50 fly title in 22.82. Belarus' Yauhen Tsurkin took second in 23.17, while Ukraine's Andrii Govorov and Morozov shared bronze with matching 23.22s for third place.
PRIZE MONEY BREAKDOWN
The Salnikov Cup is typically the final pro meet of the year with race winnings as follows: Winner — RUB 20,000 (equivalent of USD 666); Second — RUB 15,000 (equivalent of USD 500); Third — RUB 10,000 (equivalent of USD 330). After the first night of swimming, swimmers have won more than $22,000 with Katinka Hosszu leading all swimmers with more than $3,000 in winnings thus far.
|Female||Melanie Costa Schmid||ESP||0||$0||1||$500||0||$0||$500|