Here's what the winning athletes had to say following their races following the Day 1 Finals of the World Aquatics Swimming World Cup - Budapest 2023 meet.
World Aquatics Swimming World Cup - Budapest 2023
Day 1 Finals - 20 October 2023
Women’s 400m Freestyle
Erika Fairweather - NZL
I love racing the 400 free. I am just so stoked. Lani always pushes me and I know we were watching each other the entire time. I was pleased with my time. It feels great to have won all three races in the World Cup this season.
Men’s 400m Freestyle
Samuel Short - AUS
It was hard; I knew it would be hard. I am just coming off a gym block and not much pace work in the 400, but this result exceeded my expectations. I had a great race with these boys. I was pleased that Kieran was next to me and that Danas was on either side of me. I had a good eye on them and it was a perfect place for me.
I went out hard in the first 200 and I set the pace for the race.
I have just come off a huge training block so I never expected a swim as good as this in October. To be able to race with these boys is really important
This time and at this time of the season is pretty good for me. It was massive.
I have never gone this fast in October. I think this sets me up to drop a really great time in December and early next year.
It’s been a great year and I am excited for what's ahead.
After Budapest, I am heading back to Australia to train and focus on the Olympic Trials.
Women’s 50m Backstroke
Kaylee McKeown - AUS | WORLD RECORD
I was also wondering if I could swim a World Record. I just wanted to get out fast tonight and see what I can do.
The only thing I can keep doing is training hard and keep believing in myself and believing in my coach.
I am obviously very very happy. I never saw myself as a sprinter so it’s really nice to have that under my belt Next year is going to be a really tough year so the more confidence I can build, the better.
I have been surprising myself since Berlin. I have been trying to do a couple of things differently and I am pleased that they are working.
Obviously, I just have to keep my cool and keep my jets.
It's an exciting time, and I look forward to heading home soon, but it's been an amazing experience racing internationally and it's been a great opportunity to race with so many of my teammates.
Men’s 200m Backstroke
Roman Mityukov - SUI
Of course it hurts; it's a 200 back. It’s the beginning of the season and when you are not tapered, it's really, really hard. A 1:56 in October, its my first my first World Cup victory after a bronze in Athens. These experiences will help me – it's good for the future.
I swam these events because long course racing in the Olympic year is very important. It’s better for me. I don't know the splits but I felt it was a pretty good race. I still had energy to come back in the last 50 so I think I managed well for today.
Women’s 200m Butterfly
Zhang Yufei - CHN | World Cup Record
Yes, I got the World Cup record and it’s amazing! There are no more 200 fly races for me in this World Cup. I am so happy with the race and the result. Yes, I won!
Before the race, I was very nervous because I had won the two previous races and there was pressure. I had to prepare myself for tonight’s race while being nervous.
Of course, I will continue to swim the 200 fly but I still think it’s a hard race. Tomorrow I will race in the 100 fly. Sarah is my idol in the 50m free and also the 50 fly and I like to go to congratulate her after her races.
Men’s 100m Butterfly
Noe Ponti - SUI
I think I made a mistake on my breakout. I broke out a bit too early and I was still underwater and it broke me. Of course, it didn't affect the race, it was a little mistake but I did a lot of good things. But I will have some time to fix mistakes before next summer in Paris.
I joined the first World Cup of the season in Budapest because I took a 4 weeks break after Fukuoka and I will not take any breaks over the winter. It would have been too much racing and not enough training so I thought I needed to skip Berlin and Athens in order to train.
I wanted to start off the season with a win. This year we are going to stop losing and winning a lot more.
Budapest is always amazing, fans here are always so amazing.
Women’s 200m Breaststroke
Tes Schouten - NED | World Cup Record
It was a PB and I didn't expect the World Cup Record. I expected a pb but maybe not today. I am happy with another World Cup Record and another win.
My training is going well, I am having more fun than I ever have before.
My coach said to me, just go for it, you won’t die no matter what.
He suggested that I think of the race as 4 x 50 instead of another 200. Fifty’s are sets that we do in practice, and that advice made a difference tonight.
Men’s 100m Breaststroke
Qin Haiyang - CHN
It was a good feeling to win this event.
This win makes me feel more confident in the next two races.
Women’s 50m Freestyle
Sarah Sjostrom - SWE
I am super happy with that race. I am really happy to swim with these girls.
It was a great swim at this time of the year. I am happy to continue to swim at a high level.
My lowest level is at a very high level at the moment.
I am super happy. I feel very fast, I didn't feel that I did everything correctly but I could still swim a very good time.
even though I didn't swim everything perfectly, I am going to remember this race and make a few corrections
Of course there are always details that can be improved on, whether it's a breakout, or how you swim your race, there are lots of details.
swimming is a bit of a puzzle, you need a little bit more time to put all those pieces together but I still swam very well.
Tomorrow will be very tough, Zhang Yufei (CHN) put up a very good 100 fly tonight. and I hope that I can put up a good swim tomorrow and see what happens.
Men’s 50m Freestyle
Ben Proud - GBR
I was watching the races the past two weeks and saw some really fast times thrown down in October and I wanted to come join in. Budapest being one of my favourite pools, I wanted to come here and execute a good race.
21-anything I would be really happy with and 21.7 in October I think is great.
To race head to head with these guys, and it's a pretty good group is special.
I was racing against some really great competitors, every one of the seven is a strong swimmer.
I wasn’t able to race in Berlin and Budapest as I had to get some training in, my focus is on the events at the end of the season. But I am here because I knew that I wanted to start the season with some long-course racing.
I wish I could have joined the tour earlier but this year my priority was to train and I am glad that I did that.
Budapest is a great pool to come to for fast racing.
I have the 50 fly here and that’s it, it’s a short program but that suits me.
Contributing: Gregory Eggert, World Aquatics Correspondent