MADRID, Spain, April 1. AFTER setting a new 200 fly national record yesterday, Mireia Belmonte successfully downed the national mark in the 400 IM today with a world-leading time at the Spanish long course nationals.
Belmonte, the reigning short course world champion in the 400 IM, won that event handily today in 4:34.91, erasing her previous mark of 4:36.31 set last year. The win places her at the top of the world, almost four seconds ahead of the former global leader, France's Lara Grangeon. Belmonte formerly stood seventh in the world with a 4:42.66 from February. Placing second in the event was Claudia Romeu with a 4:43.79, which places her 11th in the world. Christina Garcia was third with a 4:46.94.
Hungary's David Verraszto won the men's 400 IM with a 4:13.54, which puts him third in the world behind 4:13 swims by Roberto Pavoni and Ous Mellouli done earlier this year. Second place went to Italy's Federico Turrini in 4:19.44, with Eduardo Solaeche placing third as the top Spaniard in 4:21.13.
Hungary was also represented at the top of the podium in the women's 200 free, with Agnes Mutina winning in 1:57.62. A tie for second place was shared by Patricia Castro and Melanie Costa with matching times of 1:58.88.
Ernesto Acuna won the men's 200 free with a time of 1:50.32, passing Alex Sanchez in the final meters for the win. Sanchez touched second in 1:50.91. Italian Olympic champion Massimiliano Rosolino was third in 1:51.08.
Marina Urzainqui won the women's 100 breast final with a 1:08.36, just off her national record of 1:07.63 from 2009. Well back in second was Evelyn Perez with a time of 1:10.43. Third place went to Jessica Montero with a 1:10.96.
Brazil's Henrique Barbosa took the men's 100 breast title with a 1:01.43, which ties him with Mark Gangloff for 12th in the world. Melquiades Caraballo was second in 1:02.40, while Matias Jenaro was third in 1:02.75.
Minguet Peris posted the top time in the women's 50 backstroke semifinal with a 28.23, then returned later in the session to win the finale with the same time. The second place finisher was Marce Da Rocha with a 28.85. Ane Saseta was third in 29.56.
Aschwin Wildeboer was the top swimmer in the men's 50 back semifinal with a 25.28, which ranked him seventh in the world, until he returned in the final later in the session and lowered his season best to 25.24. Miguel Rando placed second with a 25.56 after swimming a 25.30 in the semifinals for the eighth spot in the world rankings. Brazil's Guilherme Guido placed third with a 25.98.
Judit Ignacio fell just short of the national record in the women's 100 butterfly semifinal with a 59.70. The national record stands at 59.60 by Anglea Cisneros from 2009. The second seed for the final will be Zsuzsanna Jakabos with her time of 1:00.46. Third for the final will be Carla Casajus with a 1:01.06.
Poland's Konrad Czerniak will be the top seed for the men's 100 butterfly final with his semifinal time of 53.27, which ties him for 12th in the world. Rafael Munoz was right behind with a time of 53.28, good for 13th in the world. Brenton Forns will take the third spot in the finale with his time of 54.61.