Belmonte Blasts New Short Course 400 IM World Record In Eindhoven

We’ve been seeing World Records of the sprint variety go down as of late, but tonight Spain’s Mireia Belmonte cranked out a new mark in the women’s 400m IM. While competing on day 2 of the World Cup in Eindhoven (SCM), Belmonte scorched the field and blasted a new 400 IM WR of 4:18.94. That eclipses the previous record held by Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu of 4:19.46 set at the 2015 European Short Course Championships.

Belmonte and Hosszu have gone back and forth in owning this 400 IM WR, with the former’s mark of 4:19.86 serving as the time Hosszu surpassed with her 4:19.46 win in Netanya. The duo finished 1-2 in tonight’s race in Eindhoven, however, the race strategy played out very differently for the two elite athletes. At the conclusion of the backstroke leg, Belmonte sat over 2 seconds behind a field-leading Hosszu, with the Spaniard’s split registered at 2:06.46 compared to Hosszu’s clocking of 2:03.79 at the 200m mark.

Belmonte took things to another level during the breaststroke, however, making up that time difference and then some, coming out ahead by almost 3 seconds before holding on to the pole position through the freestyle leg. Behind Belmonte’s new WR of 4:18.94, Hosszu settled for 4:25.18, yet still claimed silver in the race. For Belmonte, her time tonight represents the first time a female swimmer has dipped under the 4:19 threshold in the short course 400 IM event.
(Photo:Peter Sukenik)