Lochte, Coventry set short-course world records
MANCHESTER, England -- Kirsty Coventry broke the world's oldest short-course record on Saturday.
The Zimbabwean continued her spectacular week in the Manchester pool by winning her fourth gold, in the 200-meter individual medley.
Coventry established her third world mark of the short-course championships in 2 minutes, 6.13 seconds.
The previous mark of 2:07.79 had been held by Allison Wagner of the United States since the inaugural edition of the meet in December 1993.
Coventry wore an LZR Racer, the Speedo swimsuit that has been helping swimmers rewrite the record books since it was introduced in February.
Nineteen long-course world marks have been set in the LZR. Twelve more world marks have been established through three days at these championships. All but one of the records have fallen to swimmers wearing the LZR.
"Everyone is going out of their minds now," Coventry said. "It's been a busy week. I haven't had a chance to settle down and think about it.
"I've only got the 50 back tomorrow, so in the afternoon and I can settle down and take it all in. I hope I can go to Beijing and keep the ball rolling."
Mireia Belmonte of Spain finished second, also inside the old mark in 2:07.47.
Ryan Lochte continued his winning streak with a world record in the 100 individual medley semifinal.
The American, who had already set a mark in the 200 version and bagged the 400 title, led qualifying for Sunday's final in 51.25. Liam Tancock of Britain was 0.02 behind.
Lochte also guided the U.S. team to a record-breaking swim in the 400 freestyle relay.
But fresh from his latest record-breaking swim, Lochte failed to qualify for the 50 breaststroke final.
The 12th mark of the championships tumbled in the women's 400 freestyle relay, with the Netherlands bettering their own record in 3:29.42.
Inge Dekker withdrew from the 100 butterfly due to illness, but returned to race the third leg to power her team to victory.
"I still don't feel great," she said. "I felt very ill this morning, very shaky, and was up all night last night. But clearly I had something left in the tank, so this medal is fantastic."
Jessica Hardy of America finished in 1:04.22 to better the championship record she set in the semifinals in the 100-meter breaststroke. Jade Edmistone of Australia was second in 1:04.93 and Suzaan Van Biljon of South Africa was third in 1:05.38.
Peter Marshall of the U.S. came from behind at the halfway mark to claim the 50 backstroke in 23.49 and Tancock won his second silver of the meet in 25.53. Bronze went to Ashley Delaney of Australia in 23.57.
"The race was just so close. Anybody in the heat could win it," said Marshall, a former 100 world-record holder who earlier in the meet had failed to make that final.
Adam Pine of Australia went one better in the 50 butterfly than he did in the 100, capturing his first individual gold in 22.78.
"It feels good to finally win something at this level," he said. "I've been in this sport for a long time and its just great to take advantage of these opportunities.
"It's an Olympic year, everyone's swimming really fast and I'm just happy that I'm improving."
Sergit Breus of Ukraine took silver in 22.86, ahead of Evgeni Korotyshkin of Russia.
In the 50 backstroke, world-record holder Sanja Jovanovic advanced to the final in a championship record time of 26.71, bettering the mark Coventry set in the heats.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
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