Simone Manuel Wins 50 Freestyle In Race to Wall: Sjostrom & Campbell Round Out Podium (Race Video)

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Simone Manuel Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

FINA World Swimming Championships (Simone Manuel)

Gwangju 2019

Day Eight Finals (Women’s 50m Freestyle)

Simone Manuel became the sixth woman to win the sprint freestyle double at a single World Championships after she added the 50m title to her 100m freestyle gold in a race to the wall in which the top three were separated by just 0.06secs.

She became the sixth woman to win gold in the women’s 50m and 100m freestyle at a single World Championships, and the first since Bronte Campbell of Australia in 2015.

With victory Manuel became the third woman to have won at least 11 gold medals joining an elite club with fellow Americans Katie Ledecky (15) and Missy Franklin (11).

The yellow caps of Cate Campbell and Sarah Sjostrom were locked stroke for stroke but it was the American in lane six who got the touch in 24.05secs, the fifth-fastest in the world this year.

Sjostrom was second in 24.07 ahead of Campbell who touched in 24.11.

It was a perfect start to the evening for Manuel who then went on to swim the freestyle leg of the winning 4x100m medley relay team that set a new world record in the final event of the competition.

She reflected: “I think also it’s pretty evident we didn’t start on the best note but also we did have a great meet and I think that’s getting a little lost.

“We had amazing swims, people had best times and even if they missed the podium at the end of the day we always want to represent our country the best we can and also we want to swim our best and I definitely think every swimmer that stepped up on the blocks this week did that.”

It was Sjostrom’s third freestyle medal of the week after she claimed bronze in both the 100m and 200m freestyle, the latter an event she once vowed she would never do again.

The Swede also made history be becoming the first woman to win medals in the 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle at the same World Championships.

She is also the first woman to have won five medals in individual events at a single world championships – 50m butterfly (gold), 100m butterfly (silver), 50m freestyle (silver), 100m freestyle (bronze), 200m freestyle (bronze).

“I am very happy that I could get another medal, my fifth individual medal here,” she said.

“I don’t think many people have won medals in 50, 100 and 200 freestyle before, I’m not sure.

“Especially not with two extra events on the side – the 50 and 100 fly. It was a very close race but I am happy because I had such a tough programme, I wanted to challenge myself. I didn’t know if it was the right decision to do that but I am very, very pleased I decided to do such a tough programme.”

 

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