Moeller Pedersen Powers To 2:20 ER
Mar 29, 2013 - Craig Lord
Rikke Moeller Pedersen, of Denmark, today cracked the European records, shiny and textile, with a 2:20.53 victory over 200m breaststroke on the last day at the Danish Open in Brønshøj.
The standard had stood to surprise 2009 world champion Nadja Higl (SRB) at 2:21 but that listing on the start sheet at the Danish meet is incorrect: Yuliya Efimova (RUS) took bronze just ahead of Pedersen on 2:20.92 at the Olympics in London last year. LEN lists Efimova as record holder and we can therefore assume that she went through anti-doping after the London 2012 final.
If any doubt were to have remained about the continental standard it would be related to a persistent problem: if Efimova, as bronze medallist, had not gone through anti-doping at the Games after her bronze-medal winning swim, her time would be a European best but not a European record. Several problem cases have arisen in recent years on those grounds, including a few key swims at the Beijing 2008 Games.
Pedersen's performance in Brønshøj marks her first time inside the European long-course records set in any suit. The 24-year-old world short-course champion from Odense raced alone almost half a lap ahead of next best through splits of 32.49, 1:08.33, 1:43.98, and 2:20.53. Her best had been a 2:21.66, clocked for fourth at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
In textile suits, only the 2:19.59 world record of American Olympic champion Rebecca Soni and her semi of 2:20.00 at London 2012 are better than Moeller Pedersen's effort today. It took her 0.01sec inside the 2:20.54 at which Australian Leisel Jones had held the world mark from 2006 to the advent of shiny suits banned from January 1, 2010.
At 18, Pedersen was making her way from junior to senior waters on a best of 2:33.10.
In other action, Jeanette Ottesen, Svømmeklubben Kvik, Kastrup, clocked 25.21 to win the 50m free ahead of Mie Nielsen, Aalborg, on 25.48, Pernille Blume, Sigma Swim Birkerød, on 25.50, with 15-year-old Julie Levisen, Aalborg, taking down the Danish junior mark in 25.63.
The men's dash also saw a Danish junior record fall, 23.07 granting victory to 17-year-old Magnus Westermann, Herlev Svømning, ahead of a 23.17 for Daniel Steen Andersen, Horsens Svømmeklub.
Viktor B. Bromer, Aalborg, took the 100m butterfly in 53.94, 0.02sec ahead of Søren Dahl, Herlev Svømning; Christina Munkholm, Køge Svømmeklub, clocked 1:00.43 to pip
Katrine Holm Sørensen, Esbjerg Svømmeklub and on 1:00.86, in the women's equivalent; Eyglo Osk Gustafsdottir, 17-year-old racing for Ægir in Iceland, took the 200m backstroke in 2:11.43; and teenager Erik Persson clocked 2:14.55 to take the 200m breaststroke for Kungsbacka Simsällskap.