Chad le Clos has shattered his 200m butterfly short-course world record in Singapore.
Under stormy skies today, the world and Olympic champion produced a lightning swim to touch in 1 minute 48.56 seconds, nearly half a second under his record set in August and five seconds ahead of the pack.
The 21-year-old later added 50m butterfly gold to extend his lead in the overall standings with just two stops left in the eight-leg series after Singapore.
“I just heard the crowd pick up and I knew that I was under world-record pace,” said Le Clos.
“For me it’s just about getting faster each year, and the most important thing is that I keep dominating the events that I am dominating and extending on other events like the freestyle and individual medley races,” he added.
Le Clos was the star, but Australia caused fireworks of their own with not one but two world records in the newly introduced 4x50m mixed medley relay, the first in the morning heats.
Robert Hurley, Christian Sprenger, Alicia Coutts and Cate Campbell combined for times of 1:39.08 and then 1:38.02, twice bettering France’s record set in Doha last month.
“We’re going to break it again! Two or three more times [this year],” Sprenger said. “We’re definitely going to get it again. We’re progressing well and we’re going to be fast, so it should be good.”
Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu added to her lead in the overall standings with another two golds, while Russia’s Vladimir Morozov also topped the podium twice at Singapore Sports School.
The evening started in thrilling fashion as New Zealand’s Lauren Boyle held off world record holder Mireia Belmonte to win the 800m freestyle.
Three-time world sprint champion Roland Schoeman used a vastly superior start to power home in the men’s 50m breaststroke, beating Australia’s Sprenger by more than half a second. In the swim of the night, Le Clos was half a second below his own 200m butterfly world record, set in August, at the 150m mark and he powered home to lower it by 0.48. Le Clos punched the water and waved to the crowd before returning to the pool to take 50m butterfly gold with another dominant swim ahead of Schoeman and Brazil’s Nicholas Santos.
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