Swimming: Kapas takes fourth gold as Hungary top medals table

Reuters News
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Posted: May 22, 2016 3:44 PM

By Alan Baldwin

LONDON (Reuters) - Boglarka Kapas won her fourth gold medal of the European swimming championships on Sunday as Hungary topped the final medals table while hosts Britain wrapped up the pool action with a relay double.

Kapas had already won 800m, 1,500m and 4x200 freestyle golds and the 23-year-old added the 400m to her collection with a time of four minutes 3.47 seconds, ahead of Britain's defending champion Jazz Carlin.

"When I saw I had swum 4:03 I couldn't believe my eyes," Kapas said. "I dared to switch gears at 150m and this meet has given me an enormous boost."

The time moved her up to sixth in the world rankings ahead of the Rio Olympics.

Hungary ended the meeting with 10 golds and a total of 19 medals, fewer than Britain who took their haul for the week to 22 but only seven of them gold.

Two of those came in the closing relays, with the women winning the 4x100m medley by more than two seconds before the men raised the roof by defending their title in the final race by a clear second.

It was the first time Britain had won both the medley relays at a European championships.

"The chemistry is building within this team and that's only going to grow in the build-up to Rio," said 50 and 100m breaststroke champion Adam Peaty, who ended the meeting with four golds despite being in heavy training.

Head coach Bill Furniss said the aim was to swim tactically good races.

"You have to put the competition in context," he told the BBC, mindful that some nations were using the championships as trials for Rio while others saw it more as extended training and some did not turn up at all.

"You can't do everything and have eight weeks of displaced training."

London 2012 Olympic champions Florent Manaudou of France and Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands again won gold in the London pool in the men's and women's 50m freestyle.

World champion Manaudou won his final in 21.73, with Ukraine's Andriy Govorov second in 21.79 and Britain's Ben Proud taking the bronze in 21.85, but had hoped to win with more of a flourish.

"I came here to win and I did it. But I'm very disappointed with the time," he said. "I expected a much better one."

Germany's Franziska Hentke won the women's 200m butterfly gold, beating Liliana Szilagyi by 0.01 seconds. The Hungarian had missed the 100m podium by 0.04 earlier in the week.

"It's a bit ironic to lose by 0.01 when you are leading all the way but if this should happen, let it happen here and not in Rio," said Szilagyi.

(Editing by Clare Fallon)