2022 MARE NOSTRUM TOUR
Hungarian star Kristof Milak left the field in his wake on Thursday during the second night of finals from the 2022 Mare Nostrum Tour in Barcelona, dominating the men’s 200 fly field en route to setting a new series record.
The 22-year-old Olympic gold medalist was in a tight race with South African Chad Le Clos through the first 100 meters, but Milak pulled away on the back half and went on to win comfortably in a time of 1:53.89.
That swim broke both the Barcelona and overall Mare Nostrum Series Record of 1:54.42, set by Le Clos back in 2016.
Trofeu Internacional Ciutat de Barcelona – Circuit @MareNostrumswim |
🏊♂️ 200 BUTTERFLY
🥇KRISTOF MILAK 1:53,89 ‼️ RÈCORD TROFEU INTERNACIONAL CIUTAT DE BARCELONA I RÈCORD DEL CIRCUIT MARE NOSTRUM
🥈NOE PONTI 1:56,03
🥉LEONARDO DE DEUS 1:56,18@nataciocat pic.twitter.com/kGszbUjqTp
— CN Sant Andreu (@CNsantandreu) May 26, 2022
Milak’s swim falls just .01 shy of his season-best 1:53.88, set at the Hungarian Championships last month, which ranks him second in the world this season behind Olympic silver medalist Tomoru Honda (1:53.87) of Japan.
More conservative on the opening 50, Milak was nearly seven-tenths quicker on the third 50 compared to his splitting last month.
Milak, April 2022
Milak, May 2022
Le Clos’ splits from the previous Mare Nostrum Record aren’t fully available (missing the 50 splits on the back half), though he was 54.69 at the 100 before closing in 59.73, compared to Milak’s 54.30/59.59.
In Barcelona, Switzerland’s Noe Ponti emerged as the runner-up in a time of 1:56.03, followed by Brazilian veteran Leonardo de Deus (1:56.18) and then Le Clos (1:56.38).
Milak set the world record of 1:50.73 in the event at the 2019 World Championships in Gwangju, and followed up by winning Olympic gold last summer in 1:51.25.
He notably produced the second-fastest swim of his career right around this time last year, 1:51.10, but that was at the European Championships, which were in May in 2021 but will be held in August this year.
In one month’s time, Milak will be eyeing a title defense of his World Championship crown before seeking a third straight European title later in the summer.