RUZA, Russia, July 25. THE Sizzling Siberian Vlad Morozov continued to prepare for his European championships debut with a win in the 50 freestyle today at the Russia Cup.
Morozov cruised to the win with a 22.24 over the 22.47 by Andrey Grechin. Both have been faster in 2014, with Morozov holding third in the world with a 21.55 and Grechin in 11th with a 21.94. Ivan Kuzmenko settled for third against the sprinting giants with a 22.55.
Another star swimmer, Veronika Popova, put up a 54.55 leadoff leg to help Saint Petersburg win the 400 free relay with a 3:45.58. Popova’s swim is just three tenths off her time from Russian nationals, a 54.21 that is 17th in the world.
Vitalina Simonova improved on her season best time of 2:24.93 in the 200 breaststroke with a 2:24.66 tonight. The small improvement moved her up the world rankings, from 14th to 12th place. Daria Chikunova was second with a 2:28.28 and Vera Kalashnikova placed third with a 2:29.54.
Andrey Shabasov and Grigory Tarasevich both had a great battle in the men’s 200 backstroke final. Shabasov led by a second at the 100 and withheld a very strong charge by Tarasevich at the end to win with a 1:58.65. Tarasevich, who will be a sophomore at the University of Louisville, was second with a 1:59.49. Nikolay Snegirev was third with a 2:01.96.
Anastasia Ivaneko dominated the women’s 800 freestyle with an 8:46.60. Also under nine minutes was Yulia Snoz with an 8:56.44, while Anastasia Guzhenkova was third with a 9:00.32.
Evgeny Kulikov and Dmitry Ermakov battled throughout the men’s 400 free final. Kulikov got the victory with a 3:51.18 over Ermakov’s 3:51.33. Alexander Krasnykh was third with a 3:54.11.
Svetlana Chimrova, who stands 12th in the world with a 26.24 in the 50 butterfly, won that event today with a 26.82. Rosalia Nasretdinova took second with a 26.96, and Anastasia Lyazeva was third with a 26.98.
Special thanks to Maria Dobysheva for contributing to this report.