Swimming European Championship: Bayer & Bucher miss out on medals

Austria’s first swimming medal at the Long Course European Championships in Rome just didn’t work out on Friday. Valentin Bayer over 100 m breaststroke in 59.54 and Simon Bucher over 50 m dolphin in 23.12 seconds in their finals beat their national records by 5/100 and 6/100 respectively, but they were missing 4/4 in fourth and fifth place respectively. 100 or 5/100 on the podium. There were also eighth places for Lena Grabowski and Bernhard Reitshammer and twelfth for Heiko Gigler.

In his third race in the Foro Italico, Bayer set an OSV best time for the third time, nibbling off a total of six tenths of his own. The 22-year-old was more happy about his repeated improvement in performance than he was annoyed about the missed medal. “It was a great race for me. I’m overjoyed, even if four hundredths are unlucky,” said the Lower Austrian from Gießhübl. Now he can also be expected in the chest sprint, and Bayer is also set for the medley relay.

EM bronze: Vasiliki Alexandri breaks medal ban

Reitshammer will also be there, but on the back. This time he lost the breaststroke duel by 0.58 seconds in 1:00.12 minutes, although he was only three hundredths behind Bayer at half-time. “It annoys me because I know that I can swim faster,” said the Tyrolean. “But I can’t do the whole 100 m yet, we have to work on that.” For the 50, his main route, things are looking pretty good.

Bucher still has his best distance with 100 m dolphin ahead of him on Saturday. His performance at the 50s is all the more gratifying. “I felt as soon as I started swimming that it could be fast. Unfortunately, I just missed the medal, but I had a good race.” The 22-year-old, who was sixth at the World Championships, could now make up for the missed medal at the weekend. Of course, Bucher rejected forecasts: “You can dream a lot, but you have to bring it first.”

Grabowski: “Target final reached”

Grabowski clocked the 200m backstroke in 2:11.23, 0.45 off her semifinal time. “I reached my goal with the final. That’s why I tried to go faster, but unfortunately I’m not in the same shape as in Budapest (EM 2021, note) “, said the Burgenland woman, who was somewhat thrown off the sporting track during the season by high school and illness.

Gigler, on the other hand, missed his OSV record from the morning in 48.85 by 0.42 seconds and also to become the first Austrian over 100 m freestyle in a long-track European Championship or World Championship final. But he felt the run more than the morning heat. “It’s a shame, but with regard to the Olympic limit, I’m now confident that we’ll pack next year,” the 26-year-old looked ahead. Already in the morning, EM debutant Anastasia Tichy had completed her baptism of fire on the big stage over 50 m dolphin in 28.36 seconds (34th).

The Italians won gold four times that evening. Margherita Panziera won the 200m backstroke by more than two seconds in 2:07.13, Thomas Ceccon in 22.89 in the 50m dolphin, Nicolo Martinenghi in 58.26 in the 100m breaststroke and Simona Quaderella in 8:20.54 over 800 m freestyle. Marrit Steenbergen won the 100 m freestyle in 53.24 and the Dutch mixed medley relay in 3:41.73. The 17-year-old Romanian David Popovici set a European record of 46.98 in the 100 m freestyle, while the world record (46.91) set by the Brazilian Cesar Cielo Filho could fall in the final.


Featured image: GEPA.

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