European Championships: Kristof Milak Wins Third Straight 200 Fly Title To Complete Double-Double; Hungary 1-2

kristof-milak-200-fly-gold-world-record-2022-world-championships-budapest-1
Kristof Milak: Photo Courtesy: Giorgio Scala / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

European Championships: Kristof Milak Wins Third Straight 200 Fly Title To Complete Double-Double; Hungary 1-2

Kristof Milak won his third straight 200 butterfly title to complete the double-double at the European Championships in Rome.

The Olympic and world champion stopped the clock at 1:52.01 – a time only he and Michael Phelps have bettered – two days after he won the shorter race, thereby completing the 100-200 fly double and repeating his feat from the Budapest edition in May 2021.

Splits: 24.31/52.59 (28.28)/1:21.99 (29.40)/1:52.01 (30.02)

Briefly, it appeared that Alberto Razzetti might be eating into his lead on the third 50, the roar in the Foro Italico stands rising to a crescendo, but Milak simply swam away down the last 50 with a slight glide into the wall.

Hungarian teammate Richard Marton was second in 1:54.78 with Razzetti third in 1:55.01.

Only Franck Esposito of France and Germany’s Michael Gross outstrip the young Hungarian with four titles but given he is only 22, Milak is set to soar far beyond even their great achievements.

So much better is he than any of his peers that we’ve soon become accustomed to seeing him finish metres ahead of the field.

What shouldn’t be forgotten is that each of those performances brings with it a new entry in the history books.

Milak owns the five best performances in history and six of the top seven with his world record of 1:50.34 from Budapest in June at the pinnacle.

That took him 1.36secs beyond Phelps’ greatest effort in textile of 1:52.09 at the 2007 worlds in Melbourne and 1.17 swifter than the 28-time Olympic medallist’s 2009 WR that Milak crushed at the 2019 worlds in Gwangju.

MILAK Kristof HUN 200m Butterfly Men Semifinal Swimming FINA 19th World Championships Budapest 2022 Budapest, Duna Arena 20/06/22 Photo Andrea Staccioli / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

Kristof Milak: Photo Courtesy: Andrea Staccioli / Deepbluemedia / Insidefoto

Tuesday’s effort was the seventh fastest in history as he secured his third gold and fifth medal overall but Milak instead paid tribute to his fellow Hungarian, saying:

“My swim? Who cares? The big story here is Richard’s (Marton) silver. That’s something I’m really crazy about.

“We’ve been training together for years and before Tokyo he almost quit and stayed only to support my preparations for the Games. But we convinced him he had a lot more in him.

“Now you could see him coming all the way.

“Our plan worked out well in the semis, to have a lane order like this, attach to the Italian and stage a big finish.

“When I turned onto the last leg, I saw only Alberto, not him, and I wondered, buddy where are you? But then at the wall I saw he made it and I went mad.”

He added:

“OK, as for myself, this 1:52.0 is a fine one, since, unlike ever before, it was my last swim.

“Never swam a 200m fly as a last race and definitely not for a 14th start in a meet – so all in all, this time makes me happy under these circumstances. I care only about times, not the titles – oh yeah, and now on Ricsi (Marton)!”

Marton has claimed his first senior medals at the Foro Italico after a successful junior career and he said:

“Well… My first ever senior final at a European Championships and I got a medal right away with a personal best – not a bad start, I think.

“I’m overjoyed right now that we could stick our plans during the last two days and everything worked well perfectly.

“I knew some will storm away at the beginning but I also knew that I would come like hell at the end.

“This silver is very special, different than the gold with the relay – but the two together remind me the road I’ve travelled ’til now and that give me some satisfaction.”

Results

  1. Kristof Milak (HUN); 1:52.01
  2. Richard Marton (HUN); 1:54.78
  3. Alberto Razzetti (ITA); 1:55.01
  4. Giacomo Carini (ITA); 1:55.17
  5. Noe Ponti (SUI); 1:55.26
  6. Denys Kesil  (UKR)/Kregor Zirk (EST); 1:55.80
  7. Krzysztof Chmielewski (POL); 1:56.43
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Kim
1 month ago

Richard Marton has exploded the last year after Milak joined his training group under the guidance of Balasz Virth.

Last edited 1 month ago by Kim
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