Paltrinieri beats Hackett 13 year-old WR
World and European records fell on Day 3 proving that the 18th European Short-Course Swimming Championships are a true year-ending showcase featuring some of the greatest stars on the planet. Italy’s Gregorio Paltrinieri was the one stealing the show in Netanya by cracking the 1500m free WR, joining Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu who bettered her second WR in this meet, this time in the 100m IM. Her compatriot, Laszlo Cseh smashed the ER in the 200m IM.
At the LEN Opening Press Conference Italy’s superstar Gregorio Paltrinieri insisted on he was not in top shape as he swam a lot at this stage of his Olympic preparation – and one might wonder now how fast he could have swum had he arrived to Netanya fully tapered. The reigning World and European champion – cracked the l/c ER both in Berlin 2014 and in Kazan 2015 – set a devastating pace early in the race and only the clock remained his rival. And the Italian beat the ‘chrono’ as well (14:08.06), bringing down the legendary Grant Hackett’s global mark (14:10.10), set 13 years ago.
This was the second WR-beating of the day after Katinka Hosszu shove off 0.03sec from her previous mark from last year in the 100m IM (56.67). This was the second WR for Hungary’s Iron Lady in Netanya (she cracked the first in the 400m IM on the opening day) and she was also the first in Netanya to win back-to-back titles in the same session: the win in the 100m IM followed her overwhelming performance in the 200m back.
The other Hungarian gold-miner, Laszlo Cseh went on offering outstanding performances: after his birthday-present 100m fly win yesterday he was back for more. And he amazed everyone by not only winning the 200m IM but also smashing the European record which was one of those times clocked in the shiny suit era in 2009. Not a bad effort from the 30 year-old – and it was his 30th European title overall (long- and short-course combined).
Other classy swimmers also started to boost their medal tally: Sarah Sjostrom (SWE, 100m free) and Radoslaw Kawecki (POL, 100m back) both collected their second gold respectively. Franziska Hentke won the 200m fly title with a fine swim, but Philipp Heintz’s silver in the 200m IM also made headlines in Germany as this was the country’s 300th s/c European medal in the history of the event.
The session-ending sprinting titles went to Russia – Evgeny Sedov won the 50m free – and to Italy as their female quartet was the fastest in the 4x50m free.
Press release from LEN
Photos courtesy of Deepbluemedia/Giorgio Scala