By Annika Johnson on SwimSwam


14-year-old Eneli Jefimova of Estonia had the fastest 200 breast time in prelims of the FINA World Cup in Berlin with a 2:22.99, taking 1.5 seconds off her lifetime best from November 2020 to set a new National Record. She split the race 1:08.53 / 1:14.46, coming back in 36.52 on the last 50 meters.

Jefimova already holds a monopoly on the breaststroke Estonian National Records in long course meters, and now she owns both the 100 and 200 breast records in short course meters.  She was the youngest swimmer at the Tokyo Olympic Games where she raced the 100 breast and 200 breast and finished 16th in semifinals and 27th, respectively.

While no one who made the Tokyo Olympics 200 breast podium is in Berlin, 17-year-old Lydia Jacoby, the 100 breast gold medalist, is and she finished 4th this morning.

19-year-old  Isabel Gose of Germany kicked off the session with the fastest 400 free time: 4:03.61. She came within 5 seconds of her lifetime best from November 2019 with 16-year-old American Cavan Gormsen right on her heels, finishing 2nd with a 4:04.56. Gose’s lifetime best still stands at 3:58.91 from 2019 so will likely set the pace even faster in finals.

The Netherlands’ Luc Kroon touched the wall 1st in the men’s 400 free with a 3:41.94, about 2 seconds off his best time from December 2020. He was more than a second ahead of Russia’s Matthew Sates and German distance star Florian Wellbrock who finished 2-3 this morning.

The women’s 50 back was an incredibly tight race between Olympians Kira Toussaint of the Netherlands and Maggie Macneil of Canada who claimed the top two spots in tonight’s final with a 26.19 and 26.25, respectively. Toussaint dropped her fastest 50 back time, 25.60, in November 2020 while this was a lifetime best for Macneil by 1.3 seconds.

In the men’s 200 back, Germany’s Christian Diener out-touched Russia’s Martin Binedell by .08 for a time of 1:53.47. 16-year-old Caleb Maldari of the USA dropped a 1:54.93 to make it into the final ranked 4th.

USA 16-year-old Tess Howley 17-year-old Charlotte Hook went 1-2 during the women’s 200 fly prelims, with a 2:08.02 and 2:08.85, respectively. Zoe Dixon squeaked into the final in 8th place, bringing the number of American teenagers in the final up to 3 (nearly 4 with Paige Kuwata as the first alternate.)

Three-time Olympian Chad le Clos of South Africa swam the 100 fly, finishing 2nd in prelims behind, .60 behind Hungary’s Szebaztian Szabo who touched the wall at 50.48. 

Tokyo silver medalist Arno Kammingaof the Netherlands blasted a 56.48 in the men’s 100 breast to claim the top spot in finals, more than half a second ahead of Germany’s Fabian Schwingenschlogl who took 2nd. The youngest finalist is USA’s Zhier Fan who is ranked 5th at 17 years old.

Australian swimmers destroyed the 50 free on both the men and women’s sides. Emma McKeon posted the fasted time in the women’s race with a 23.84 while Sweden’s Michelle Coleman is 2nd going into tonight’s final (23.92). McKeon came within .24 of her lifetime best time from the International Swimming League 3 weeks ago. Kyle Chalmers won the men’s 50 free (21.18) by a slightly larger margin of .14 to 2nd place finisher Hungary’s Szabo who will have an exciting double if he swims both the 100 fly and 50 free in finals.

The fastest time in the women’s 100 IM came from Israel’s Anastasia Gorbenko who was one of only 3 swimmers under 1:00, touching the wall at 59.03. Sweden’s Louise Hansson and the Netherland’s Kim Busch also cracked the mark and are 2-3 going into the final. The youngest competitor will be USA’s Leah Hayes who’s ranked 5th at 15-years-old.

Russia’s Sates and USA’s Blake Pieroni led the men’s 100 IM field during prelims, touching the wall 1-2 with times of 53.20 and 53.73. Sates qualified for the final in the 400 free, 100 fly, and no 100 IM. He will have a tough schedule in finals if he chooses to swim all three.

Read the full story on SwimSwam: FINA World Cup Day 1 Prelims: 14YO Jefimova Sets 200 SCM Breast Estonian Record

Source: Swimming – SwimSwam