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NRs For Hoshi & Terakawa As 4 Lead World

Apr 5, 2012  - Craig Lord

Japan Olympic Trials, Tokyo, Day 4 Finals:

Natsumi Hoshi and Aya Terakawa shot to the helm of the 2012 world rankings when they set national records in 2:04.69 and 59.10, both third fastest ever in textile. They were joined in the league of those ahead of the world by Takeshi Matsuda, on 1:54.19 in the 200m butterfly semi, and Ryo Tateishi (and Kosuke Kitajima), on low 2:09(s) in the 200m breaststroke semis.

Hoshi, 21, took the lead of the 200m race by the 100m mark, turning in 1:00.65, after 28.66 at 50m. More than 2sec clear at the last turn, she kept up the fast pace all the way home to victory in the third fastest time ever after the 2:04.40 and 2:04.44 efforts by Olympic 1-2 from Beijing 2008, Liu Zige and Jia Liuyang, at China's April nationals a year ago.

The national record had stood at 2:05.91 to Hoshi since the world-titles final in Shanghai last year, when Jiao took gold and Liu bronze either side of Britain's Ellen Gandy.

In the backstroke final, Terakawa turned in 28.82 on the way to a 59.10 Japan record that set the third fastest textile time ever after efforts of 58.94 from Zhao Jing (CHN) in 2010 and 59.06 from Anastasia Zueva (RUS) last year. Terakawa's national mark had stood at 59.13 since 2010.

Matsuda fired past Nick D'Arcy (AUS) and Olympic champion Michael Phelps (USA) to take the helm of the world 200m butterfly rankings in 2012 with a 1:54.19 effort in semis. Also leaping into the world toip 5 in the semi in Tokyo was Hidemasa Sano, on 1:55.90. Matsuda's time was just 0.18sec outide the time in which he claimed silver behind the 1:53.34 victory of Phelps at world titles last year in Shanghai.

How Olympic season is shaping up at the helm of the 2012 ranks so far:

  • 1:54.19 Takeshi Matsuda (JPN)
  • 1:54.71 Nick D'Arcy (AUS)
  • 1:55.32 Michael Phelps (USA)
  • 1:55.90 Hidemasa Sano (JPN)
  • 1:55.94 Joseph Roebuck (GBR)

On that list, Phelps is the only one yet to race tapered ready for peak performance in 2012.

In the 200m breaststroke semi-finals, Tateishi and Olympic champion Kitajima raced inside 2:10 and to the helm of the 2012 world rankings with efforts of 2:09.02 and 2:09.25 to book centre stage for the final tomorrow.

How Olympic season is shaping up at the helm of the 2012 ranks so far:

  • 2:09.02 Ryo Tateishi (JPN)
  • 2:09.25 Kosuke Kitajima (JPN)
  • 2:09.33 Andrew Willis (GBR)
  • 2:09.72 Chris Burckle (USA)
  • 2:09.78 Laurent Carnol (LUX)

On 2:09.84 last month in London, Britain's Michael Jamieson is the last man inside 2:10 so far.

Race reports

Women's 200m butterfly

Natsumi Hoshi's 2:04.69 national record made her the third woman to crack 2:05 in a textile suit, the time the 14th fastest ever if one effort in 2008 and 10 efforts in 2009 are included in the count at a time when shiny suits were allowed by FINA. Hoshi was in a league of her own, the silver going to Masami Uchikoshi in 2:09.24, bronze to Yuka Katou in 2:09.57.

How Olympic season is shaping up at the helm of the 2012 ranks so far:

  • 2:04.69 Natsumi Hoshi (JPN)
  • 2:05.95 Ellen Gandy (GBR)
  • 2:06.37 Jemma Lowe (GBR)
  • 2:06.76 Cammile Adams (USA)
  • 2:06.93 Jessica Schipper (AUS)

Gandy, world silver medallist, also has three of the best ten times in the world so far this year.

Women's 100m backstroke

Aya Terakawa, 27, was the only sub 29sec swimmer at the half-way and extended her lead still further on the way home to the Japanese record of 59.10, 0.03sec inside her previous best. The silver went to Shiho Sakai in 1:00.50, with Noriko Inada locked out by 0.07sec. The winning time is 4th best performance ever in textile, with Zhao having been faster twice, while the list of performances that includes shiny suits banned since January 1, 2010, places Terakawa 22nd.

How Olympic season is shaping up at the helm of the 2012 ranks so far:

  • 59.10 Aya Terakawa (JPN)
  • 59.28 Emily Seebohm (AUS)
  • 59.39 Anastasia Zueva (RUS)
  • 59.39 Belinda Hocking (AUS)
  • 59.69 Mie Nielsen (DEN)

On 59.85 and 59.89, Canada's Julia Wilkinson and American Melissa Franklin (who could have raced for Canada but opted for the US), are the last two under the minute so far this year.

Women's 200m medley

After turning third after the butterfly, Izumi Katou was never led again, on 1:02.69 after backstroke and 1:40.10 after breaststroke on her way to a 2:11.79 victory and London 2012 ticket. The silver went to Miho Teramura, 17, in 2:12.95, the bronze to Emu Higuchi, 15, in 2:13.81. The winning time  is 10th best in the world so far this year and best ever by a Japanese woman in a textile suit, the national record held at 2:10.90 by Tomoyo Fukuda since 2009.

In other semi-finals:

In the 100m freestyle, Takurou Fujii clocked 49.12 to lead five men inside 50sec on the way to a final closed at 50.22.

In the women's 100m free, Yayoi Matsumoto clocked 54.37 in the second semi to take lane 4 in the final away from Haruka Ueda, on 54.55 in the first semi. The last eight was shut at 56.03.