Kristof Milak Crushes Michael Phelps World Record in 200 Fly With 1:50.73 (Video)

Kristof Milak of Hungary celebrates after winning in the men's 200m Butterfly Final during the Swimming events at the Gwangju 2019 FINA World Championships, Gwangju, South Korea, 24 July 2019.
Kristof Milak of Hungary celebrates after cracking the 10-year-old world record of Michael Phelps for gold in the 200m butterfly in Gwangju, as Daiya Seto, silver, and Chad Le Clos, congratulate each other on the minor spoils - Photo Courtesy: Patrick B. Kraemer Photo Courtesy: Patrick B. Kraemer

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World Swimming Championships (Kristof Milak)

Gwangju 2019

Day Four Finals (Men’s 200 Fly)

Hungary’s Kristof Milak crushed the world record in the 200 fly on Wednesday night at the 2019 FINA World Swimming Championships in Gwangju, South Korea.  Milak, 19, crushed the world record at 1:50.73 to lower Michael Phelps’ world record of 1:51.51 from 2009. It is the first time someone not named Phelps has held the world record in the men’s 200 fly since 2000.

It is the first world record of Milak’s career and it is the fourth time the world record has been broken at the World Championships. Mel Stewart broke the WR in 1991 (1:55.26) while Phelps broke it in 2001 (1:54.58), 2007 (1:52.09) and 2009 (1:51.51). Phelps also broke the world record in the semifinals in 2003 at 1:53.93.

Milak was out under world record pace through 150 meters, similar to what he did at the European Championships in 2018. But this time Milak held on to break the world record, and then some, knocking nearly a full second off of Phelps’ WR from ten years ago. Last year, he looked disappointed after his 200 fly in Glasgow when he was within a tenth of Phelps’ world record pace

Milak’s previous best was a 1:52.71 from last year as he was third all-time. He dropped nearly two full seconds from his best time in one swim.

    • Milak’s splits: 24.66, 28.22, 28.69, 29.16. He was out in 52.88 and 1:21.57.
    • Phelps’ splits: 24.76, 28.12, 29.05, 29.58. He was out in 52.88 and 1:21.93.

200 Fly Results:

  1. 1:50.73, Kristof Milak, HUN, WR
  2. 1:53.86, Daiya Seto, JPN
  3. 1:54.15, Chad Le Clos, RSA
  4. 1:54.39, Federico Burdisso, ITA
  5. 1:54.79, Denys Kesyl, UKR
  6. 1:55.69, Zach Harting, USA
  7. 1:55.96, Leonardo De Deus, BRA
  8. 1:57.10, Tamas Kenderesi, HUN

The early leader was Chad Le Clos, who was the reigning World Champion from 2017. Le Clos was out under world record pace at 52.55 but had the slowest final 50 in the field at 31.51. He won the bronze medal at 1:54.15 as Japan’s Daiya Seto (1:53.86) won his first 200 fly Worlds medal with the silver.

Last night, Milak cruised to the final at 1:52.96. Observations concluded that Milak had not fully shaved his arms last night. When asked if he thought he could go faster last night, he said: “Of course I want to be faster. This semifinal is just a preparation for tomorrow’s final so I definitely want to be faster.”

This is Milak’s first medal in the 200 fly at the World Championships as he won the silver in the 100 fly in Budapest. It is also Hungary’s second gold medal in the 200 fly at the World Championships, adding to Laszlo Cseh‘s gold from 2015. Cseh also won silver in 2017 and Tamas Darnyi won bronze in 1991.

This is also the third of Phelps’ five world records to fall from his tremendous career. He set world records in the 400 IM, 200 free, 200 fly, 200 IM and 100 fly in his career. The 200 free, 200 IM and now 200 fly have been taken down in the last 10 years.

Hungary and the United States also notably have five of the ten fastest performances in this event with Milak, Phelps and Cseh standing on the list.

Le Clos also became the third man to win at least four medals in this event at the World Championships after Phelps and Wu Peng won five and four medals respectively. Le Clos won golds in 2013 and 2017 and also the silver in 2015.

Going back to the race itself, Italy’s Federico Burdisso was fourth at 1:54.39 while Ukraine’s Denys Kesyl (1:54.79) was fifth. USA’s Zach Harting (1:55.69), Brazil’s Leonardo De Deus (1:55.96) and Hungary’s Tamas Kenderesi (1:57.10), who won a swim-off this morning to get here, also swam in the final.

Top 10 Performers:

  1. 1:50.73, Kristof Milak, HUN (2019)
  2. 1:51.51, Michael Phelps, USA (2009)
  3. 1:52.70, Laszlo Cseh, HUN (2008)
  4. 1:52.96, Chad Le Clos, RSA (2012)
  5. 1:52.97, Takeshi Matsuda, JPN (2008)
  6. 1:53.23, Pawel Korzeniowski, POL (2009)
  7. 1:53.40, Masato Sakai, JPN (2016)
  8. 1:53.42, Tamas Kenderesi, HUN (2019)
  9. 1:53.64, Tyler Clary, USA (2009)
  10. 1:53.79, Nao Horomura, JPN (2018)

Top 10 Performances:

  1. 1:50.73, Kristof Milak, HUN (2019)
  2. 1:51.51, Michael Phelps, USA (2009)
  3. 1:52.03, Michael Phelps, USA (2008)
  4. 1:52.09, Michael Phelps, USA (2007)
  5. 1:52.20, Michael Phelps, USA (2008)
  6. 1:52.70, Laszlo Cseh, HUN (2008)
  7. 1:52.71, Kristof Milak, HUN (2018)
  8. 1:52.76, Michael Phelps, USA (2009)
  9. 1:52.79, Kristof Milak, HUN (2018)
  10. 1:52.91, Laszlo Cseh, HUN (2016)

World Record Progression:

  • 1:50.73, Kristof Milak, HUN (2019)
  • 1:51.51, Michael Phelps, USA (2009)
  • 1:52.03, Michael Phelps, USA (2008)
  • 1:52.09, Michael Phelps, USA (2007)
  • 1:53.71, Michael Phelps, USA (2007)
  • 1:53.80, Michael Phelps, USA (2006)
  • 1:53.93, Michael Phelps, USA (2003)
  • 1:54.58, Michael Phelps, USA (2001)
  • 1:55.18, Tom Malchow, USA (2000)
  • 1:55.22, Denis Pankratov, RUS (1995)


  1. avatar

    WOW Great

  2. Anne Groskamp Broughton

    Don’t know whether to laugh or cry. We love Michael – but this performance/s are great show of outstanding swimming.

  3. Kelly Gebadlo

    Mike Gebadlo Levi Gebadlo Noah Gebadlo

  4. Norbert Siket

    Repült a Srácunk,
    Zendült az álmunk,
    Csoda történt messze,
    Robbant hős, szép teste,
    Ő volt “A” Pillangó,
    Hős volt, a szívrabló,
    Éretten tempózott,
    Szép csendben meglógott,
    Elnyúlt a világtól,
    Nem szúrt a hiánytól,
    Szilárd titkot őrzött,
    Milák Kristóf győzött!


  5. Aaron Wands

    Wow! Sad and happy at the same time.

  6. Lajos Madár

    my country is a small country (Hungary) but it has always been big swimmers

    • Wendy Mitchell-Payne

      Heather Shaffer wow!! Yes… goals! ?
      Putting in the work this morning! 9 hours after he left practice last night!

  7. avatar

    Under 1:50 in Tokyo..Omg

  8. Paul Roe

    2 seconds off his PB…… at that level………. ?????

  9. Abel Tan

    Simon Langer dude… what a beast

  10. Suzanne Maranto Baker

    Oh shoot will Michael be back to defend his title? Probably not since he has done what no other swimmer has done and won 8 Golds in a single Olympics! He is still the greatest swimmer we have ever known!

  11. Nathan Mizner

    Abby Lahey we were sorta just talking about this

  12. Erick André

    Iván Erandi Romero García vas weexd

  13. Alison Evans

    Brilliant WELL DONE ?
    Good to see hard work training pays off

  14. avatar
    Armando Costes

    Wow! Congratulations!! Still a big fan of MP..

    • Viktoria Levins

      Hans Ferguson why aren’t you accepting the fact that a young man from a small country broke a world record? There are still hard working swimmers who can achieve these kind of results without doping. Unbelievable

    • Hans Ferguson

      Viktoria Levins testing is just a part of the game sometimes. I hope he’s clean. That’s just one of the hardest records that was left to beat from the fast suit era. Set by the greatest swimmer of all time. If he’s clean, I hope he crushes his own record later. It will be great for the sport.

    • Susan Steeper Magnanelli

      Toni Fisher Chow darn, I guess Michael Phelps will have to come out of retirement, lol ?

  15. avatar

    “It is also Hungary’s first gold medal in the 200 fly at the World Championships “…..right. Apart from Laszló Cseh in 2015, 4 years ago! Stupid mistake.

  16. Judy Sandlin

    This is great- congratulations!

  17. avatar

    Great. The progress is awesome.

  18. Andrey Yunusov

    Istvan Santa, congratulations and your country has all chances to have a gold in Tokio 2020

  19. Andrea Hammonds

    Brandon Hammonds wow Maddox just text me about this

  20. Debi Ealer

    Records are made to be broken.

  21. Sarah Douglas Cox

    Awesome swim and great reminder that ANY record can be broken

  22. Topher Rosdal

    Hannah Trautmann Kale Tahju Austin Hailey Imeson

  23. Neil Morgan

    It looks like he could go a bit quicker too. Maybe he will push the record into the low 1:50s, or even break 1:50 (sounds ridiculous to consider it, but never say never).