Vynohradets, Boki in line for latest European titles

A series of other swimmers will also try to add to their medal count in the finals in Funchal, Portugal, on Friday (6 May). 06 May 2016
Swimmer doing backstroke

Ihar Boki, Belarus

ⒸLuc Percival Photography. All rights reserved.

“I went pretty controlled this morning, just to blow off the cobwebs after a day off.”

Belarusian Ihar Boki and Ukraine’s Dmytro Vynohradets headlined the heats at the IPC Swimming European Open Championships on Friday (6 May), placing themselves in pole position to take their fifth and sixth golds respectively in Funchal, Portugal.

World and European champion Vynohradets (3:25.76) will try to reach the top of the podium once again as the fastest qualifier from the men’s 200m freestyle S3.

His main opponent, Russia’s Alexander Makarov (3:28.44) is running out of chances to secure his first gold medal but will get one more try as the second fastest qualifier.

Italy’s Vincenzo Boni (3:37.65) was third.

Paralympic and world gold medallist Boki (57.64) will go for his latest gold medal of the Championships as the fastest qualifier from the men’s 100m backstroke S13.

Uzbekistan’s Kirill Pankov (1:02.69) and Ukraine’s World Championships silver medallist Iaroslav Denysenko (1:02.85) were second and third respectively.

Ukraine’s world champion Yelyzaveta Mereshko swam close to the world record time of absent British European champion Eleanor Simmonds in the women’s 400m freestyle S6 heat.

Mereshko registered 5:19.15, some 0.44 seconds away from Simmonds’ mark set just last week, to place herself in line for a fourth gold.

Eleanor Robinson (5:51.72) will represent Great Britain as the second fastest qualifier ahead of Ukrainian Viktoriia Savtsova (5:54.12).

Savtsova’s European champion compatriot Sergii Klippert (1:01.68) went through quickest in the men’s 100m backstroke S12 in front of Azerbaijani brothers Raman (1:02.57) and Dzmitry Salei (1:03.08) who were second and third respectively.

Sweden’s women’s 100m breaststroke specialist Maja Reichard (1:26.95) also set herself up perfectly for this evening’s final. The Paralympic, world and European champion is seeking her second gold of the competition and leads the Netherlands’ teenager Liesette Bruinsma (1:28.03), who is after her third title. Ukraine’s Yana Berezhna (1:32.79) was third fastest.

Teresa Perales is looking to retain her gold in her favourite event, progressing to the women’s 100m freestyle S5 final in 1:23.96. Norway’s Worlds and European silver medallist Sarah Louise Rung (1:25.53) was second.

“It was a good time, I felt that it went well” Perales said. “I only wanted to do well and get the feeling for the water. I hope I can do better in the evening, maybe 1:21.00.”

British swimmer, European gold medallist Susannah Rodgers (1:16.65), is in pole position to retain her title and win her third gold as the fastest in the women’s 100m freestyle S7 heat.

“I pushed it a little bit but not too much so hopefully a bit more tonight,” Rodgers said.

At the last European Championships in 2014, Great Britain’s Claire Cashmore tied with Russia’s Olesia Vladykina for the gold in the women’s 100m breaststroke SB8.

“I went pretty controlled this morning, just to blow off the cobwebs after a day off,” Cashmore said. “I am going in and give it everything and that’s all I can ask for. A personal best would be absolutely amazing and that’s what I really want from tonight.”

This time, Cashmore (1:25.00) led the heats ahead of Poland’s Paulina Wozniak (1:26.02) and Portugal’s Joana Calado (1:26.74) in second and third respectively. Vladykina also qualified.

Calado said: “It was fantastic - I swum a new national record! The crowd was amazing, I have my parents in the stands cheering me on. Just swimming against some of the best girls in the world is a big enough honour.”

Leading a crop of five Russian swimmers to qualify fastest in their heats was world champion Darya Stukalova (1:09.08), going for her third gold of the week in the women’s 100m backstroke S12.

Ukraine’s Yaryna Matlo (1:16.24) was second ahead of Great Britain’s Hannah Russell (1:17.19).

World title holder Anna Krivshina (1:09.03) qualified fastest in the women’s 100m backstroke S13. Uzbekistan’s Shokhsanamkhon Toshpulatova set yet another Asian record of (1:10.69) in second ahead of Ukraine’s Anna Stetsenko (1:12.92).

Russia’s Dmitrii Chernaev (1:18.06) led the men’s 100m freestyle S5 heat ahead of France’s Theo Curin (1:18.77) and Spain’s European champion Sebastian Rodriguez (1:20.35).

Sergey Sukharev (1:04.87) was quickest in the men’s 100m freestyle S7, ahead of Great Britain’s Jonathan Fox (1:05.56) and Russian European bronze medallist Andrei Gladkov (1:05.56).

Paralympic champion Pavel Poltavtsev (1:07.95) went quickest in the men’s 100m breaststroke SB9 to round-off the best Russian performances of the day.

Dutch world and European champion Chantalle Zijderveld (1:18.45) put in a great swim to qualify fastest for the final of the women’s 100m breaststroke SB9. The world record holder led Great Britain’s Harriet Lee (1:21.66) and Argentina’s Daniela Gimenez (1:22.67).

Dutch 19-year-old Thijs van Hofweegen (5:20.07) heads the field in the men’s 400m freestyle S6, leading Italian world champion Francesco Bocciardo (5:20.71) into the final.

“It was a good race but the last 100m was very tough. It’s a personal best and I’m hoping to get under 5:20.00 tonight. It feels great touching the wall first to be in lane four tonight,” van Hofweegen said.

Russia’s Viacheslav Lenskii (5:33.29) was third.

Poland’s Jacek Czech (1:00.30) leads Ukraine’s European champion Serhii Palamarchuk (1:00.48) into the final of the men’s 50m backstroke S2.

Austria’s World’s Championships bronze medallist Andreas Onea (1:13.56) went through fastest in the men’s 100m breaststroke SB8.

“I still have something left for the final but it’s a good time for a heat and I’m looking forward to the final, so let’s see,” Onea said.

Italian European champion Federico Morlacchi (1:18.82) was second ahead of France’s Charles Rozoy (1:19.04).

Live coverage and results will be available every day until 7 May at www.Funchal2016.com. Morning sessions begin at 9:00am (WET) and evening sessions at 5:00pm (WET) each day.


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