Mireia Belmonte Garcia Shines With Epic Double at Spanish Nationals

PALMA DE MALLORCA, Spain, April 13. ONE last night of finals produced two more title for the Spanish star Mireia Belmonte Garcia at the Spanish Long Course Nationals.

Mireia Belmonte Garcia moved to the top of the SwimVortex world rankings in the women’s 400-meter freestyle with a 4:03.84 for the win. That time crushed her own meet record of 4:05.63 from last year, and made her the first under 4:04 this year, downing Katie Ledecky’s previous top time in the world of 4:04.46 from the Arena Grand Prix in Austin. Melanie Costa Schmid, the Spanish record holder with a 4:02.47 from last summer, took a distant second tonight in 4:07.24, while Maria Vilas Vidal snagged third in 4:13.77.

Belmonte Garcia doubled up with a 2:11.26 to win the women’s 200-meter IM tonight. That swim pushed her to ninth in the world rankings in the event. Beatriz Gomez Cortes (2:12.33) and Catalina Corro Lorente (2:14.25) placed second and third in the medley event.

Jessica Vall Montero smashed the meet record in the women’s 200-meter breaststroke in a day that featured a huge amount of change in the SwimVortex world rankings in this event. Vall Montero posted a 2:23.96 to move to sixth in the rankings, and lower Marina Garcia Urzainqui’s meet mark of 2:25.38 from 2009. In just one day, across the Eindhoven Cup, Japanese Nationals, British Nationals and here in Spain, a new top nine world-ranked times were posted. The only time left over after the onslaught from today in the top 10 is Sally Hunter’s 2:24.91 from Aussie Nationals last week for 10th overall.

Garcia Urzainqui finished second tonight in the 200 breast with a 2:28.65, while Concepcion Badillo Diaz snagged third in 2:29.28.

Eduardo Solaeche Gomez posted a Spanish record in the men’s 200-meter IM with a 1:58.99. That swim beat his preliminary meet record of 1:59.55, and downed his own Spanish mark of 1:59.39 set last August. He moved up to seventh in the world this year with that swim. Alexis Santos took second in 2:00.25, while Albert Garrich snared third in 2:00.28.

Rafael Munoz Perez jumped to fifth in the world in the men’s 50-meter fly with a 23.21, while Jose Manuel Valdivia Canizares took second in 23.75. Miguel Ortiz rounded out the top three in 23.93 this evening. Marc Sanchez Torrens claimed the men’s 400-meter freestyle in 3:51.52 with Miguel Duran Navia placing second in 3:51.70. Guillermo Sanchez Gutierrez-Cabello finished third in 3:51.93.

Judit Ignacio Sorribes topped the women’s 50-meter fly with a 27.50, while Maria Sanchez Rodriguez took second in 27.61. Carmen Herrero Ansoleaga snared third in 27.65. Melquiades Alavarez Caraballo won the men’s 200-meter breaststroke in 2:12.24 with Carlos Almeida taking second in the finale with a 2:14.23. Sergio Garcia Ortiz finished third in 2:14.90.