2019 European Junior Swimming Championships Finals Day Five: Andrei Minakov Gets Decisive Victory in Men’s 100 Fly

Andrei Minakov; Photo Courtesy: Giorgio Scala / deepbluemedia

The 2019 European Junior Swimming Championships entered its final day of competition with renewed energy after a climactic four days. For the last time, Europe’s best young talent convened in Kazan in hopes of leaving an impression in the final weeks leading up to the World Championships. Having been quite the precursor, this junior meet has done its job in showcasing the sport’s rising generation, which is quickly establishing a presence even at the senior level.

Men’s 400 IM

Greece’s Apostolos Papastamos (4:15.18) struck again in the men’s 400 IM, attaining a commanding lead early in the race and maintaining it throughout. Bettering Russian Ilya Borodin’s mark of 4:17.09 by nearly two seconds, Papastamos made the race all his own. France’s Leon Marchand charged in at third, posting a time of 4:17.22 to narrowly cinch the bronze over Britain’s Charlie Hutchinson (4:17.63). Russia’s Danil Zaytsev clocked in at fifth, heading the second wave with a 4:18.20 and gaining a healthy advantage over Hungary’s Mark Torok Dominik (4:20.03). Thomas Jansen (4:25.44) of the Netherlands and Poland’s Przemyslav Suchanski (4:27.06) rounded out the heat with impressive swims of their own.

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Women’s 100 Back

Russia’s Daria Vaskina took the women’s 100 back with ease, clocking in at 1:00.17 to better her runner up’s mark by over a second. Erika Francesca Gaetani of Italy tried to hold on while fending off Portugal’s Rafaela Gomes Azevedo (1:01.85), ultimately turning in a 1:01.62 for silver.

Lena Riedmann of Germany barely conceded a spot on the medal stand, as she crashed the pads with a 1:01.98, good enough for fourth. Britain’s Honey Osrin broke into the top five with a 1:03.22, edging out Austrian Lena Grabowski (1:02.32) and Francesca Pasquino (1:02.34) of Italy in the process. Britain’s Medi Harris brought up the rear with a time of 1:02.46, topping off a packed heat.

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Men’s 100 Breast

Aleksandr Zhigalov (1:00.75) of Russia defended his honor with an impressive performance in the men’s 100 breast, as he and the Netherlands’ Caspar Corbeau (1:00.77) went stroke for stroke at the finish, with Zhigalov managing to get a fingertip on the wall first. The heat was particularly loaded, as Turkey’s Demirkan Demir and Russia’s Vladislav Gerasimenko turned in identical races for third, clocking in at 1:00.84. Eoin Corby of Ireland was not to be ignored, as his time of 1:01.05 landed him in the top five ahead of Britain’s Archie Goodburn (1:01.65) and Kyle Booth (1:02.61). France’s Carl Aitkaci topped off the event with a 1:02.75 for eighth.

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Women’s 100 Breast

Britain’s Kayla Van der Merwe seized top honors in the women’s 100 breast, gaining a narrow advantage over Russian compatriots Anastasia Makarova (1:07.30) and Evgeniia Chikunova (1:07.63). Lithuania put its name back on the radar with an impressive performance from Kotryna Teterevkova, whose 1:08.12 stole fourth ahead of Italian breaststroke stalwart Benedetta Pilato (1:08.22). The Czech Republic’s Lydie Stepankova turned in a 1:08.87 for sixth, while Hungary’s Eszter Bekesi and Thea Blomsterberg of Denmark tallied points for their countries with times of 1:09.17 and 1:10.12, respectively.

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Men’s 200 Free

Sweden’s Robin Hanson was the only man under 1:47.00 this evening in the men’s 200 free, as he surged to a 1:46.93 to cinch the gold with relative ease. The race was on for second, as Britain’s Matthew Richards (1:47.23) managed to out-touch Switzerland’s Antonio Djakovic (1:47.26) for silver.

Nikita Danilov (1:49.06) of Russia held off the Netherlands’ Luc Kroon (1:49.51) for a spot in the top four, while Yordan Yanchev (1:49.80) of Bulgaria managed to go under 1:50.00 for sixth. Hugo Sagnes of France and Jan Karolczak of Poland clocked in at 1:50.74 and 1:50.79, respectively.

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Women’s 200 IM

Zoe Vogelmann pulled out a close victory for Germany in the women’s 200 IM, edging Israel’s Anastasya Gorbenko (2:13.81) at the finish with a 2:13.78. Israeli Lea Polonsky was close behind, touching in at 2:14.29 to reserve her spot on the medal stand ahead of Britain’s Katie Shanahan (2:14.55). Italy’s Roberta Circi broke into the top five with a 2:15.41, with just four tenths separating her from Spain’s Alba Vasquez Ruiz (2:15.83). Russia’s Anna Chernysheva turned in an impressive 2:16.03 for seventh, followed by Giulia Goerigk (2:16.73) of Germany.

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Men’s 100 Fly

Russia found itself on top once again after a breakthrough performance by Andrei Minakov, whose 51.66 in the men’s 100 fly earned him top honors with ease. Bulgaria’s Josif Miladinov was his runner-up, clocking in at 52.11 to fend off Germany’s Luca Nik Armbruster (52.54).

Minakov’s compatriot Egor Pavlov (52.99) tallied more points for the powerhouse with a fourth place finish, while Switzerland’s Noe Ponti made his presence known with a 53.08. Israel’s Gal Cohen Groumi led the final wave with a 53.26, edging out the Ukraine’s Igor Troyanovs’kyy (53.44) and Italy’s Claudio Antonino Faraci (53.47).

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Women’s 50 Fly

Anastasiya Shkurdai turned in a quick lap for the gold, tallying points for Bulgaria in the women’s 50 fly with a time of 26.23. France’s Naele Portecop barely conceded top honors, coming six hundredths short with a 26.29. Costanza Concconcelli of Italy topped off an impressive individual schedule with a bronze-worthy performance, clocking in at 27.03 ahead of Turkey’s Aleyna Ozkan (27.09).

Britain’s Sophie Yendell managed to sneak into the top five with a 27.16, edging out Russia’s lethal duo of Daria Klepikova (27.29) and Iana Sattarova (27.30). Italy’s Rita Maria Pignatiello closed out the event with a 27.43. of her own.

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Men’s 50 Free

Artem Selin of Germany claimed the last individual event of the meet with a sub-22.00 performance in the men’s 50 free. Clocking in at 21.83, Selin left the rest of the pack, leaving Kenzo Simons (22.10) of the Netherlands to battle for second. Vladyslav Bukhov nabbed third honors with a time of 22.37, putting distance between himself and Norway’s Nicholas Lia (22.83). Filip Orlicz of Poland filled out the top five, crashing the pads with a 23.01 with the slightest advantage over Louis Godefroid (23.02) of France. Russia’s Aleksandr Shchegolev was forced to settle for seventh with a time of 23.04, while Denmark’s Malthe Lindebald sent the meet into its final events with a 23.16.

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Women’s 800 Free Relay

Russia has proven unstoppable in freestyle events as of late, and the women’s 800 free relay was no exception. With its quartet of Aleksandra Bykova, Yana Kurtseva, Ekaterina Nikonova, and Polina Nevmovenko, the swimming powerhouse touched in at 8:01.62 for a decisive victory over Great Britain’s Freya Colbert, Tamryn Van Selm, Emma Russell, and Mia Slevin (8:03.77). Germany narrowly conceded silver with an 8:03.99, as Zoe Vogelmann, Maya Tobehn, Rosalie Kleyboldt, and Isabel Marie Gose put forth an impressive showing of their own to close out the women’s schedule.

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Men’s 400 Medley Relay

Russia reinforced its relay monopoly with a grand finale in the men’s 400 medley, as Nikolai Zuev, Aleksandr Zhigalov, Andrei Minakov, and Aleksandr Shchegolev sprinted to a final time of 3:35.97 for the win. Italy rode its rival’s hip, as Thomas Ceccon, Emiliano Tomasi, Claudio Antonino Faraci, and Stefano Nicetto combined efforts to post a 3:37.63 for second, leaving the pack. Turkey filled out the top three with its quartet of Mert Ali Satir, Demirkan Demir, Emir Simsek, and Baturalp Unlu, clocking in at an impressive 3:42.76.

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