FINA World Short Course Championships: Alexianne Castel Downs French Record in 200 Back Victory

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, December 17. FRANCE's Alexianne Castel defended her top ranking from this year with an even swifter time to win the women's 200 back in French-record fashion at the FINA World Short Course Championships.

Heading into today with a top-ranked 2:03.01 from the French Short Course Championships earlier this month, Castel raced to victory in a time of 2:01.67. That swim beat Alexandra Putra's French record of 2:02.36 set in 2008, and moved Castel into a fourth-place tie with Aya Terakawa on the all-time charts. Only Shiho Sakai (2:00.18), Elizabeth Simmonds (2:00.91) and Kirsty Coventry (2:00.91) have been faster.

USA's Missy Franklin became the undisputed American record holder in the event with a second-place time of 2:02.01. That swim beat her American record of 2:03.26 set during prelims, and also cleared the previously legitimate, but un-ratified, top time by an American in the event of a 2:02.72 clocked by Margaret Hoelzer last December during the Duel in the Pool. USA Swimming chose to ignore techsuit swims that took place by Americans after USA Swimming enacted a techsuit ban domestically in Oct. 2009. FINA, however, did not implement the ban until Jan. 1, 2010. Franklin jumped to sixth all time in the event with the tremendous effort.

China's Zhou Yanxin completed the podium with a third-place time of 2:03.22 to beat her Chinese record of 2:04.37 set earlier in the meet.

Ukraine's Daryna Zevina (2:03.61), The Netherlands' Sharon van Rouwendaal (2:04.10), Czech's Simona Baumrtova (2:06.05), USA's Madison White (2:06.23) and Hungary's Zsuzsanna Jakabos (2:06.74) grabbed the rest of the finishes in finals.

Day Three Finals Results