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World Textile Marks For Butterfly Dashers

Apr 26, 2012  - Craig Lord

At the Maria Lenk Trophy in Rio, the non-Olympic 50m butterfly finals were used a speed tests by two medal prospects at London 2012, world champion Cesar Cielo (BRA) and Jeannette Ottesen Gray (DEN) establishing world textile marks, a third swimmer also inside the old mark too.

Cielo arrived as second-best ever in textile on 22.98, 0.02sec shy of South African Roland Schoeman's 2005 best. Now, Brazil has two men inside that, Cielo taking gold in 22.76, Nicholas Dos Santos silver and racing out of his skin on 22.79. 

Dos Santos, 32 this year, had a best of 22.87 in shiny suit from 2009 but his textile best from 2010 was 23.33. A big shift in speed today. The bronze went to Fred Bousquet (FRA) in 23.02, who was been fourth best ever in shiny suit on 22.84, the world record of 22.43 standing to Rafa Munoz (ESP) on 22.43. Dos Santos moved up to all-time 33rd best in textile to second best ever by a significant margin today.

Cielo ended the session with a 48.18 split bringing Flamengo home to victory in the 4x100m free in 3:17.59, alongside João de Lucca (49:69), American Eugene Godsoe (49:86) and Thiago Sickert (50:05).

Joint world 100m free champion Ottesen Gray set a championship record of 25.29, the third best time ever in any suit and a textile world mark. 

The swim got inside the 25.37 mark at which Therese Alshammar (SWE), world record holder on 25.07, had held the textile standard since last year and took an axe to the winner's previous best of 25.68, a Danish record that Danish sprinter established in heats in Rio 0.01sec inside a national mark set in Rome last June.

There were more speedy times in the men's 100m breaststroke as Felipe Lima cracked the minute, on 59.83 for victory over Henrique Barbosa, on 1:00.38, with Joao Gomes on 1:00.54 to give the Correios backed trio the podium. Tales Cerdeira was locked out on 1:00.62.

Look back four years and the top four times in Brazil over 1200m breaststroke ranged between 1:01.84 and 1:03.84. Seventh today was a 1:01.52.

Da Silva broke the minute for the first time last year when he clocked 59.63, Brazil's textile best, at nationals, while Barbosa holds the national record at 59.03 from a 2009 season of booster bodysuits now banned.

Leonardo De Deus, 20, pipped Thiago Pereira by 0.01sec in the 200m backstroke with a 1:57.38 championship record just 0.17sec shy of the national record set by the silver medallist at the Pan Am Games last year.

The top two booked tickets to London 2012 on the clock, De Deus registering a lifetime best inside the 1:58.29 he clocked at world titles last year in Shanghai. Leonardo Santos Fim took bronze in 1:59.36 and may get the second London 2012 berth for Brazil, Pereira and coach Alberto Pinto having already declared that they will focus on the 200m medley as their medal target in a session that holds both backstroke and medley finals. 

Fourth in Rio went to Fernando Pires, also inside 2mins, on 1:59.71. A significant move up for Pires, 24 this year: inside 2:03 for the first time in his career just last year, he arrived at nationals with a 2:01.24 best.  

In other action, former European champion Laure Manaudou delivered a knockout in the  200m backstroke with a 2:11.77 victory over her Brazilian challengers; world silver medallist Lotte Friis (DEN) claimed the 800m freestyle in a championship record of 8:26.98 ahead of Spain's Mireia Belmonte, on 8:31.80; and Ana Carvalho took the 100m breaststroke in a tight finish with Pamela Souza, 1:10.53 to 1:10.75.