Italy, Hungary and France hunted down the individual titles at the European-2016 LEN Junior Open Water Swimming Championships in Piombino (Italy), while the relay golds went to Germany and Spain. The host nation finished in the top on the medal table with an amazing 11 podium finishes.
Italian swimmers produced a tremendous weekend at the junior open water Europeans in Piombino. Swimming in the wavy waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the host youngsters amassed 11 medals among 24 on offer, though the distribution of the titles was more balanced.
In the “King category”, the 10 km race for juniors aged 18-19, Hungarian Kristof Rasovszky added the European gold to his treasury, already featuring the world title from July. He built a 10sec gap over German Florian Wellbrock and was more than two minutes faster than Italy’s Andrea Manzi, also bronze medallist at the Worlds. Two-time junior European champion Alisia Tettamanzi of Italy captured a third gold among the women, gaining 3,07 minute over her chasers, the largest winning margin in all events.
Over 7,5 km, for competitors aged 16-17, France’s Logan Fontaine also made the World-European double, though this contest went down to the closest finish of all as he edged out Russian Yaroslav Potapopov by 0,3 second. Among the girls, Hungary’s Janka Juhasz managed to pass Spain’s world title-holder Paula Ruiz in the last metres and won by two seconds.
Among the youngest ones (14-15 years old) Frenchman Jean Baptiste Clusman earned a convincing win in the 5 km race, ahead of his Italian rivals, while the girls’ race saw an Italy v Spain battle, two swimmers apiece from these two nations hit the panel almost at once with Italian Giulia Salin touching in first.
In the closing relays, staged in a new format, 4×1250 m mixed relays involving two boys and two girls in two age-groups – even more excitement was to come. The first event for the younger ones (14-16 years old) was a three-horse race where Spain was just 0,6 sec faster than the Hungarians, Italy came a further 2,1 sec adrift. In the open category (U19) Germany ruled the field, they were 1,21 min faster than the rest, but the fight for the silver was another tight one, the Italians managed to touch the panel 0,1 sec ahead of the Spaniards.
Thus Italy managed to earn at least one medal in all eight events and finished with 11, topping the medal chart and clinching the Team Trophy, Hungary came second in both. Russia with 2 silver medals and 160 points earned the third place in the General teams points’ table of the meeting.
Genaral medals table:
G S B T
ITALY 2 2 7 11
HUNGARY 2 1 0 3
FRANCE 2 2 0 2 4
SPAIN 1 2 1 4
GERMANY 1 1 0 2
RUSSIA 0 2 0 2
General teams points’ table:
- ITALY 214
- HUNGARY 185
- RUSSIA 160
- SPAIN 139
- FRANCE 124
- GERMANY 90
For all detailed results, visit www.len.eu
Photos: LEN, Giorgio Scala