Rio de Janeiro (02/07) – Brazilians Thiago Pereira, Flávia Delaroli, Eduardo Fischer, Kaio Márcio and Fernando Scherer have all faced hard duels and managed to climb the podium on the first round of finals of the Swimming World Cup.
Considered all that was at stake, Brazil has obtained a good overall result. While one single native, Thiago Pereira, has broken his own 55:41 Brazilian and South American 100m Medley Record with 54:95, the team has taken 13 medals (2 gold, 6 silver and 5 bronze) and six athletes have already obtained timings to qualify for the 2004 Indianapolis World Championship, next October.
The Brazilian winners have been Flávia Delaroli, on 50m Freestyle and Kaio Márcio Almeida, on 50m Butterfly.
Flávia has fought every inch of her way to victory on 50m Freestyle against comrade Rebeca Gusmão, who yesterday had just beaten, with 24:81, Flávia’s very young 24:83 South American record (established only last week, in New York, during the World Cup 7th leg competitions). But Rebeca did not manage to keep her own pace, while Delaroli kept her own very consistently with another precise 24:83 (yesterday, she had qualified with 24:96).
“I am very satisfied, because I came to achieve competitiveness. I went in to regain the South American Record, but my turnaround was not good. It’s good to have a strong rival in the country because that helps me to keep from accommodation. Both have won. She has kept the record and I have kept gold. I hope the Rebeca-Flávia rivalry shall become as grandiose as Borges-Scherer has been, although that figures to me as a very pretentious objective. But it might as well get to be as stimulating as it is to see both of them swimming together”, said Flávia.
Kaio beats Scherer – On his very first participation on the competition program, the 200m Butterfly, Kaio Márcio Almeida has shown a clear will to climb to the peak the podium. He has flashed forward on the first 175 meters, but lost both his stamina and gold – to Romanian Ioan Gherghel, who timed 1:55.64 – on the last pool, ending second with 1:57.21. But the swimmer from Paraíba (a state in northeastern Brazil) was back to try himself once more with all he had, this time on the 50m Butterlfy against German Johannes Dietrich and compatriot Fernando Scherer, by far the most popular swimmer in Brazil, highly acclaimed by the audience at Miécimo da Silva Sports Center. Kaio won the heavyweight duel with 23:77, against Dietrich’s 23:93 and Scherer’s 24:06.
“I did not expect these results here because training is all I have been doing, through the whole week, five hours a day. It was a great surprise. It’s the first time I beat Fernando Scherer and that is exceptional to me, even more so because 50m is not my event and I’m like a fish out of water in there. I have trained straight through Christmas, New Year’s Eve, it has been a very tiresome routine, but I am happy because the results are showing”, said Almeida.
Fernando Scherer said the he has done a wrong turnaround and that any minor flaw on such an event may cost your victory. He said that he has made a wrong turnaround and any minor flaw will cost you much o a 50m event. According to him, Almeida has swam very well: “This is an event for which I have to be always training and always because rivals may always show up”.
Thiago has bettered his own 55:41 South American Record with 54:95, time with which he achieved the silver medal after a strong dispute with the promising George Bovell, from Trinidad and Tobago, winner with 54:35. Bovell has been one of the great stars of the 2002 Santo Domingo Pan American Games, when he has won a foursome of medals: two gold (200m Freestyle and e 200m Medley) and two silver (100m Backstroke and 100m Freestyle).
Seventeen years old Pereira has also faced another struggle, against fellow Lucas Salatta and German Christian Keller, on 400m Medley. Keller has won, with 4:15.40, while 16 years old Salatta got silver with 4:15.49, leaving gold for Pereira’s 4:17.45.
Eduardo Fischer has twice been quite close to peak the podium. On the 50m Breastroke, two hundredths have made the difference between gold and silver. American Mark Gangloff (gold winner on the 100m Breastroke in Santo Domingo) has won with 27:63 against Fischer’s 27:65. Fischer said that he felt that his last arm reach had not been extended enough. On 200m Breastroke, Fischer had an amazing recovery sprint and has jumped from the sixth to the second place, since French Hugues Dubosq led since the very start and would not lose it on the last meters, ending with 2:12.19 against Fischer’s 2:12.48.
“I swam well, but did not fit the last stroke right and those two hundredths have cost me the gold metal. I am doing a job to strengthen my thigh’s tendon and articulations already with the Olympic Games on sight. I intend to lower my timing Pan American timing on the 100m Breastroke (1:01.88) break into the 1:00 margin and make the Olympic final”, said Fischer.
Romania, with 5 gold, one silver and 2 bronze medals, has jumped ahead on the medal board at the end of the first day of finals, followed by Brazil.
Atlhetes with timings for Indianapolis:
Eduardo Fischer: 50m Breastroke
Kaio Márcio: 200m and 50m Butterfly
Flávia Delaroli: 50m Freestyle
Rebeca Gusmão:50m Freestyle
Thiago Pereira: 100m Medley
Fernando Scherer: 50m Butterfly
For all final results and online development of events: www.omegatiming.com