Germany's Steffen breaks 100m world record

3rd August 2006, Comments 0 comments

3 August 2006, BUDAPEST - Britta Steffen of Germany swam a world record 53.30 seconds on Wednesday to win the blue-riband 100 metres freestyle race at the European swimming championships. Steffen took 12 hundreds of a second off the previous mark of 53.42 Lisbeth Lenton of Australia swam on January 31, 2006, in Melbourne. "I thought I could win but never thought about a world record," Steffen said. The German stole the show from Dutchman Pieter van den Hoogenband, who returned to championship action from a

3 August 2006

BUDAPEST - Britta Steffen of Germany swam a world record 53.30 seconds on Wednesday to win the blue-riband 100 metres freestyle race at the European swimming championships.

Steffen took 12 hundreds of a second off the previous mark of 53.42 Lisbeth Lenton of Australia swam on January 31, 2006, in Melbourne.

"I thought I could win but never thought about a world record," Steffen said.

The German stole the show from Dutchman Pieter van den Hoogenband, who returned to championship action from an injury-layoff to get his third straight and fourth overall men's 200m freestyle title.

Teenager Laure Manaudou, rebounded from her 400m medley disaster to hammer the field in the 800m freestyle with a European record swim.

But the day belonged to Steffen, who got her second world record in three days as she was also part of the 4x100m relay team which lowered the mark to 3:35.22 on Monday. Steffen swam the best ever relay leg in swim history of 52.66 seconds in that race.

"I told myself to be as fast as in the relay. I started fast, had a quick turn and then just fought until the end," she said.

Marleen Veldhuis of the Netherlands was a distant second in 54.32 minutes and Neri-Mantei Niangkouara of Greece third in 54,48.

Van den Hoogenband, who had not competed since the Athens Olympics in 2004 and underwent a hernia operation last year, clocked 1 minute 45.65 seconds in the men's 200m freestyle.

Italians Massimiliano Rosolino and Filippo Magnini, the 100m world champion, had to settle for second and third in 1:47.02 and 1:47.57 minutes, respectively.

Van den Hoogenband won the 200m freestyle at the 2000 Olympics (and the 100m in 2000 and 2004). At the Euro event, he won in 1998, 2002, 2004 and on Wednesday, beaten only by Rosolini in 2000. It was his 51st medal overall at major championships.

"I am very happy to be back after the operation. Now I am looking ahead at (the 2008 Olympics) in Beijing," said van den Hoogenband.

Two days after surprisingly crashing out in the 400m medley heats, Manaudou bettered the European record 8:19.53 from East German Anke Moehring on August 22, 1987 in Strasbourg, to 8:19.23 minutes for her first continental title.

Manaudou, 19, who won ahead of Britons Rebecca Adlington (8:27.88) and Rebecca Cooke (8:28.40), will compete in four further individual events plus likely two relays.

Esther Baron of France won the rain-delayed women's 200m backstroke in 2:10.07 minutes, Laszlo Cseh delighted a home crowd with first place in the men's 200m medley in 1:58.17 minutes, Ganna Khlystunova of Ukraine won the women's 100m breaststroke in 1:07.55 minutes and Joona Puhakka of Finland retained his 1m springboard diving title from 2004 with 425 points.

Thursday's events are the women's 100m backstroke, 200m medley and 4x200m freestyle relay while the men compete in 50m backstroke, 200m butterfly and 200m breaststroke. There is also the women's 10m platform diving final.

DPA

Subject: German news

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