The third and final day of the FINA World Junior Open Water Swimming Championships 2018 was held in a very relaxed, cheerful and happy atmosphere as the two team events concluded the competition. 

12 teams (4 swimmers per team) took part in the Team Relay opened to athletes aged between 14-16 years old, while 19 teams registered for the Open Relay (19 years-old and under). 

Today, beyond the healthy and natural rivalry between the national teams, you could also feel the friendship and sense of community that is so special in open water swimming. 

After the usual briefing and athletes’ presentations, the races kicked-off at 8:00am and 10:00am respectively.

Team Relay - 14-16 years-old (4x1250)

Hendrik Louw of South Africa was the fasted in the first lap of this event and was followed at this early stage by Italy’s Giulia Salin.

South Africa was still in front at the end of the second lap, while Israel’s Orr Horev Levy had made his way up to the top of the pack to be third, behind the USA.

It is only in the penultimate lap that Hungary showed its true colour with Zoltan Tabi leading the operations.

Finally Szilard Galyassy of Hungary touched home first for his team, clocking an excellent time of 56m48s1. Following 20 metres behind, USA’s Jackson Carlile gave his team the silver medal in 57m31s8.

Italy’s Federico Mazzeo allowed his team to step on the last podium stair, passing the finish line in 58m10s0, after a very tight finish against Russia, securing therefore the fourth place.

Open Relay - 19 years-old and U (4x1250)

Later in the morning was held the second and final event of Saturday, the highly anticipated Open Relay opened to girls and boys aged 19 and under.

While Brazil started on a high with Enrique Ferreira leading the race at the end of the first lap, Russia quickly took control and was in front on the second tour with Danil Nemolochnov. At this point, France, the U.S. and Spain were very close behind in the fastest pack of the relay.

Team Russia maintained the leading position until the third lap but ended being overtaken by France’s Enzo Roldan Munoz, who touched home first for victory in 55m39s9.

Roland Munoz added this second medal of the Championships to his tally after taking silver in the boys 10km on Friday September 7.

Michael Brinegar (USA) extraordinary accelerated his pace in the final lap to clinch the silver medal for his team in 56m06s7, while Italy pocketed its second bronze medal of the day as Nicola Roberto stopped the time at 56m11s3.

Their younger compatriots also secured bronze in the Team Relay, and the U.S. were also adding this additional silver to their successful and productive morning.

Final Medals table

1. USA 2 G, 2S, 1 B / 5 medals

2. FRA 2 G, 1 S / 3 medals

3. RUS 1 G, 2 S, 1 B / 4 medals

4. ITA 1G 1 S, 3 B / 5 medals

4. HUN 1 G, 1 S, 3 B / 5 medals

6. ESP 1G / 1 medal

7. PER 1 S / 1 medal

Results (complete results available here)

4x1250m - 14-16 years old Relay

1. Hungary 56m48s1 (Viktoria Mihalyvari, Mira Szimcsak, Zoltan Tabi, Szilard Galyassy); 2. USA 57m31s8 (Chase Travis, Connor Hunt, Mariah Denigan, Jackson Carlile); 3. Italy 58m10s0 (Giulia Salin, Iris Menchini, Luigi Galdieri, Federico Mazzeo)

4x1250m- 19 years old and under Open Relay

1. France 55m39s9 (Madelon Catteau, Jean-Baptiste Clusman, Lisa Pou, Enzo Roldan Munoz); 2. USA 56m06s7 (Erica Sullivan, Brennan Gravley, Kensey McMahon, Michael Brinegar); 3. Italy 56m11s3 (Silvia Ciccarella, Giulia Berton, Andrea Filadelli, Nicola Roberto)