Michael Phelps made it to the 200-meter butterfly final in Berlin Saturday but couldn’t get to the medal stand at his second World Cup this week, as Germany’s Paul Biedermann obliterated another hallowed world record.
Wearing his Speedo FS-Pro jammer, Phelps finished fifth in the 200 fly, posting a time of 1 minute, 52.26 seconds. Russian Nikolay Skvortsov won the final in 1:50.58, with Brazil’s Federico Castro (1:51.64), Australian Nick D’Arcy (1:51.72) and Japan’s Takeshi Matsuda (1:52.11) rounding out the top four.
Biedermann, meantime, clad in his Arena X-Glide bodysuit, went nearly two seconds under Grant Hackett’s 2002 record (3:34.58) in the 400 freestyle, finishing in 3:32.77. He beat Denmark’s Mads Glaesner by almost five seconds in the race, and went under Australian legend Ian Thorpe’s ’03 World Cup record in the event by 1.81 seconds .
At the world championships (long-course) in Rome this summer, Biedermann broke Phelps’s world record in the 200 freestyle and Thorpe’s record in the 400 free.
At the 100 mark of the 200 fly, Phelps stood in second place behind Castro, but he was passed by a blazing Skvortsov, who climbed from sixth to first by the 150 mark, and D’Arcy and Matsuda. Skvortsov, who finished seventh in the event in Beijing, had set the world record in the event twice between Dec. 2008 and last week, when Brazil’s Kaio de Almeida set the current mark of 1:49.11.
Phelps had also been scheduled to compete in the 100 individual medley Saturday, but after advancing in the 200 fly in the morning heats, he skipped that event.
D’Arcy is back after serving a 14-month suspended jail sentence for assaulting a fellow Australian swimmer in a brawl shortly after he won an Olympic team slot by setting a Commonwealth record in the 200 fly in March of 2008. He was suspended from the team.
In other news, 14-year-old Melissa Franklin of Aurora, Colo., finished sixth in the finals of the 200 individual medley in 2:08.62, and seventh in the finals of the 200 back in 2:05.81. In that final, Japan’s Shiho Sakai topped Kirsty Coventry’s world record (2:00.91) with a time of 2:00.18.
There were three other world records set: Cameron Van Der Burgh (25.25) in the 50 breast; Leisel Jones (1:03.00) in the 100 breast and Steffen Deibler (21.80) in the 50 fly.
For a report from Swim News, click here.
Tags: Michael Phelps