Kolesnikov Sets Russian 100 Back Record Of 52.42; National Mark For Egorova In 400 Free

Kliment Kolesnikov (photo: Mike Lewis)
Kliment Kolesnikov: Photo Courtesy: Mike Lewis/ISL

Kliment Kolesnikov set a Russian 100 backstroke record of 52.42 and Anna Egorova dismantled the national 400 free mark by almost two seconds in 4:04.10 at the Russian Swimming Championship which doubles as the Olympic trials in Kazan.

Arina Surkova and Svetlana Chimrova both made the cut for Tokyo in the 100 fly as did Kirill Prigoda and Anton Chupkov over 100br.

Link to results

The meet is the only opportunity for swimmers to put their names forward to potentially represent a Russian ‘team’ – despite the ban handed down by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

The initial four-year suspension awarded to Russian Anti-Doping (RUSADA) following the manipulation of data was halved to two years by the Court of Arbitration for Sport in December.

Individual athletes have the opportunity to prove themselves innocent making them eligible to compete under a neutral flag as was the case at Rio 2016.

Back To The Future For Kolesnikov


Photo Courtesy: Andrea Staccioli & Giorgio Scala Insidefoto / Deepbluemedia

European champion Kolesnikov had sounded a warning in the morning heats when he matched Evgeny Rylov‘s Russian record of 52.44 from the semis at the 2019 World Championships.

Rylov went on to win silver behind Xu Jiayu in 52.67 in Gwangju with Kolesnikov locked out of the final by one place and 0.04secs.

On Sunday morning Kolesnikov split 25.51/26.93 ahead of Rylov (53.04) and Nikolai Zuev (54.24).

That followed the 50 back on Saturday where he rattled his own world record of 24.00 in 24.08.

Returning on Sunday evening for the semi-finals, Kolesnikov split 25.36/27.06 to take 0.02 off the record he had matched earlier in the day in a time that would have won gold at the 2019 worlds.

Rylov qualified second for Monday’s final in 52.74 to set up a shuddering showdown with Grigory Tarasevich third through in 53.26.

Of note in terms of record though is the fact that Rylov swam 51.97 as lead-off for the Russian mixed medley relay in Gwangju.

In mixed relays there are no individual world records – which in Rylov’s case would also be a European mark – but domestic bylaws allow such times to count on a national basis.

However, Russia follows the FINA rule on world records meaning that Kolesnikov equalled and lowered the standard as it appears in their records but it was not the fastest time by a Russian man…….

Maria Kameneva booked lane four for the women’s final in 59.10 ahead of Anastasia Fesikova (1:00.20), the 30-year-old seeking a fourth Olympic appearance after making her debut at Beijing 2008.

Egorova Takes Axe To 400 Free Mark

Egorova led from start to finish to win the 400 free splitting 58.87/2:00.82/3:02.97/4:04.10 to emphatically lower the previous record of 4:06.01 set by Veronika Andrusenko in April 2019.

That time would have earned Egorova the bronze medal at the 2018 European Championships where she finished fourth in what was then a national record of 4:06.03.

It also propelled her to the top of the 2021 rankings, supplanting Katie Ledecky‘s 4:04.72.

Anastasia Kirpichnikova was second in 4:06.26 with both women inside the FINA A cut for the Games.

Andrusenko was third in 4:11.57.

Surkova Flies To Tokyo

Surkova led from start to finish to win the 100 fly in 57.54, splitting 26.36/31.18 to get inside the 57.92 cut by some margin.

Chimrova – who set the Russian record of 57.17 four years at the national championships – also dipped inside the required time in 57.83.


Arina Surkova: Photo Courtesy: Mine Kasapoglu / ISL

There was also a new Russian junior mark of 57.96 by 17-year-old Alexandra Sabitova who lowered her own record of 58.18 set three years ago when she was just 14.

Prigoda won the 100br in 59.11 ahead of world 200br champion Chupkov (59.47) with the first five swimmers all inside the required time of 59.93.

Andrei Minakov won the 50 fly in 23.02 and a Novosibirsk quartet won the women’s 4×100 free in 3:40.40.

Chikunova Leads The Way In 100Br Semis

Eugenia Chikunova led the way into the 100br final in 1:06.49 with the first three swimmers home  comfortably inside the cut.

The 16-year-old split 31.74/34.75 to finish 0.3 ahead of Rio silver medallist Yulia Efimova who posted the 10th-swiftest first 50 of the 16 swimmers (32.48) before producing the fastest split – 34.31 – of the field to come home in 1:06.79.

Tatiana Belonoff was third into the final in 1:06.95.

World bronze medallist Martin Malyutin – who won the 400 free on Saturday – headed the 200fr semis in 1:46.30.


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